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Z2 VI 


of the 



Dr. J. F. MONK 

Volume 101 

($ NAT. HlSt. ♦ 


It has been possible to publish more pages in Volume 101 than originally expected. This 
has resulted from the very satisfactory response to promotion of sales of the Bulletin 
initiated and carried out by the Hon. Secretary. The Bulletin is now being subscribed for 
more widely than ever before in its history, a reflection which must prompt gratitude in 
any editor for the high standard of submissions from authors which allows such a develop- 
ment to occur, especially during an economic depression. 

While I was abroad from April to early September, the Club was very fortunate to be able 
to call on the services of C. W. Benson and his long experience with the Bulletin. I am most 
grateful to him for seeing the June and September issues into print and for editing with his 
usual expertise some of the papers, as well as others submitted during my absence, in 
addition that is to his own heavy load of work at Cambridge. 

This is the first year that J. H. Elgood has compiled the index and we are indebted to 
him for performing this important but generally thankless task. 

I am, as always, delighted to be able to thank referees, authors and the printers for their 
patience and co-operation over the last twelve months. 



1980-1981 1981-1982 

D. R. Calder, Chairman (1980) D. R. Calder, Chairman (1980) 

B.Gray, Vice-Chairman (1980) B.Gray, Vice-Chairman (1980) 

Dr. J. F. Monk, Editor (1976) Dr. J. F. Monk, Editor^ 1976) 

R. E. F. Peal, //<?«. Secretary '(1971) R. E. F. Peal,//o«. Secretary (1971) 

Mrs. D. M. Bradley, Hon. Treasurer (1978) Mrs. D. M. Bradley, Hon. Treasurer (1978) 

C F.Mann (1977) R. D. Chancellor (1979) 

R. D. Chancellor (1979) J. G. Parker (1979) 

J. G.Parker (1979) R. A. N. Croucher(i98o) 

R. A. N. Croucher (1980) Revd. G. K. McCulloch, o.b.e. (1981) 

ISSN 0007-1595 

Bulletin of the 

British Ornithologists' Club 

Edited by 
Dr. J. F. MONK 

Volume 101 No. 1 

March 1 981 


Tuesday, 19 May 1981 in the Senior Common Room, South Side, 
Imperial College, Prince's Gardens, S.W.7 at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m. Mr. C. F. 
Mann, joint author of The Birds of East Africa, published last year, will speak 
on Forest Birds in Kenya. Those wishing to attend should send their accept- 
ance with a cheque for £4.95 a person to the Hon. Secretary at 2 Chestnut 
Lane, Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR (telephone Sevenoaks [0732] 50313) to 
arrive not later than first post on Thursday, 14 May. 

Tuesday, 7 July 1981 at the same venue and time Mr. J. H. Elgood will 
speak on The Birds of Nigeria. 

Tuesday, 15 September 1981 speaker being arranged. 

Tuesday, 17 November 1981 Mr. Peter Hayman. 

Tuesday, 12 January, 1982 Dr. T. J.Seller. 

Tuesday, 2 March 1982 Professor Gordon Orians. 

Gifts or offers for sale of unwanted back numbers of the 
Bulletin are very welcome 

The Club has no reference copies of Vol. 48 and many 
earlier issues; these would be very specially appreciated 


D. R. Calder {Chairman) B. Gray ( Vice-Chairman) 

R. E. F. Peal {Hon. Secretary) Mrs. D. M. Bradley {Hon. Treasurer) 

Dr. J. F. Monk {Editor) R. D. Chancellor 

J. G. Parker C. F. Mann 

R A. N. Croucher 

British Ornithologists' Club 1981 

239 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 

Bulletin of the 


Vol. 101 No. 1 Published: 20 March 1981 


The 1 98 1 Annual General Meeting of the British Ornithologists' Club will be held in the 
Senior Common Room, South Side, Imperial College, Prince's Gardens, London, S.W.7 at 
6 p.m. on Tuesday 19 May 1981. 


1. Minutes of the last Annual General Meeting {Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 100 : 135). 

2. Report of the Committee and Accounts for 1980. 

3. TheBulletin. 

4. Election of Officers. The Committee proposes that: 

(a) Mrs. D. M. Bradley be re-elected Honorary Treasurer, 

(b) Mr. R. E. F. Peal be re-elected Honorary Secretary, 

(c) The Reverend G. K. McCulloch, O.B.E., be elected a member of the Committee 
vice Mr. C. F. Mann, who retires by rotation. 

5 . Any other business of which notice shall have been given in accordance with Rule (7). 

By order of the Committee, 


Honorary Secretary. 


In 1980 there were 41 new Members, 6 Members resigned and 6 were struck off under 
Rule (4). There was a gratifying rise of over 10% in the paid-up membership to 342 
(including 6 Honorary Members) and there was an increase of 14% in non-member 
subscribers to theBulletin, who numbered 1 59 at the close of the year. 

It is with deep regret that the Committee reports the deaths of Miss Phyllis Barclay- 
Smith, C.B.E., Member 193 3-1980, Dr. L. H. Brown, O.B.E., Ph.D., Subscriber/Member 
1974-1980 and Mr. E. R. Parrinder, C.B.E., Member 1945-1980, all well-known and much- 
liked Members. Dr. Brown was the speaker in May last when he drew a large attendance on 
a subject near to his heart. 

Meetings were held in the Senior Common Room, South Side, Imperial College in 
January and alternate months thereafter: A special meeting in April, with an enlarged 
programme to mark the hundredth volume of the Bulletin, saw an attendance of 71, the 
largest for over 20 years. In May there was held, in addition, the first recorded Meeting of 
the Club outside London, the Harrison Zoological Museum and the Sevenoaks Wildfowl 
Reserve being visited. Numbers at the six customary Meetings were a little more than in 
1979 and attendances for all Meetings totalled 306, the most since 1962. Charges for dinner 
rose from £4.30 in January to £4.75 in November. 

The Club was accepted by the Charity Commission for registration as a charity during the 

Captain Collingwood Ingram, who joined the Club in 1901, had his 100th birthday on 
30 October 1980. A card depicting White's Thrush Zoothera dauma, specially drawn by 
Mr. R. Hume, was sent with the Club's good wishes. 

Dr. David Harrison and Mr. J. H. Elgood both kindly presented the Club with back 
numbers of theBulletin, Dr. Harrison giving over 2,000 copies, which are much appreciated. 
Gifts or offers of Bulletin back numbers are most welcome and the Club is especially in need 
of Vol. 48 and before, as there are very many of these issues of which the Club does not 
possess a copy. 

Despite the strength of sterling, inflation continued at a very high rate, with postage 
costs up 41 % on 1979 and printing charges up 1 5 %. A larger Bulletin circulation would help 
much to contain costs and it is hoped that Members, who are in touch with institutions that 
do not obtain theBulletin and should hold it, will encourage them to subscribe. 

1980 was notable for publication of Volume 100 of theBulletin, a special issue of which 
was published in March, consisting of 132 pages, with a special front cover amusingly 

[Bull.B.O.C.ip8i:ioi{i)] 240 

designed by Robert Gillmor and a back cover with reproduction of the first issue of the 
Bulletin describing the Inaugural Meeting of the Club on 5 October 1892 and of the pro- 
gramme of the joint meeting of the BOU/BOC at dinner on 8 March 1939. The latter was 
referred to as the "last of an era" by the late Phyllis Barclay-Smith in her reminiscences, 
which together with those of 7 other of the Club's most senior members formed a most 
entertaining and intriguing section of the issue. It was sad that 3 of these members, Miss 
Barclay-Smith, Dr. David Bannerman and Baron de Worms, had died before their con- 
tributions were published. 

The second and major half of the issue was devoted to papers on the advances of 
ornithology in the past half century and covered in 1 8 important zoo-geographical reviews 
a worldwide scene, omitting unfortunately Scandinavia, the Middle East and the Pacific. 
The Editor is very glad to be able to thank the authors for their ungrudging co-operation, 
involving them in considerable work and research as well as calling on their expertise on 
behalf of the Club. 

The issue opened with the Chairman's Foreword, in particular thanking The Royal 
Society, the Mount Trust, the B.O.U. and British Petroleum Co. Limited for their generous 
financial support. This was followed by a short and enlightening history of both the Club 
and the Bulletin by the Hon. Sec, Ronald Peal, and for once a lucid explanation was given 
as to why the Club's centennial volume and the Club's centenary do not coincide. 

The year's remaining 3 issues of the Bulletin consisted of 106 pages and happily have 
covered much the same scale of subjects as in recent years. With one exception (Vol. 53) 
Vol. 100 was the largest annual volume of the Bulletin in the history of the Club. Delay in 
publication has inevitably been increased by devoting one issue to invited papers, but it 
seems likely that the delay in 198 1 will not be greatly longer than the usual 6-9 months. 

The audited accounts for 1980, which are not yet available, will be tabled at the Annual 
General Meeting and published in a later number of the Bulletin. Members wishing to see 
a copy may enquire from the Honorary Treasurer. 

The seven hundred and thirty-second Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday 13 January 198 1. The 
attendance was 30 Members and 10 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER {Chairman), Captain Sir THOMAS BARLOW* 
A. M. HUTSON, Revd. G. K. McCULLOCH, C. F. MANN, Dr. J. F. MONK, E. M. 
M. R. TAYLOR, K. V. THOMPSON, A. VITTERY, J. F. WALSH and Lieut.-Col. 

Guests present were: Mrs. G. BEVEN, D. BRADLEY, Miss SARAH CONDER, 
Mrs. P. HOGG, Mrs. I. McCULLOCH, B. V. M. O'BRIEN, W. H. PARK, Mrs. R. E. F. 

Mr. Stanley Cramp, O.B.E., spoke on "Ornithology and Conservation in Europe". In 
the course of his interesting address he dealt especially with the recent E.E.C. Directive on 
bird protection. 

A note on Bensch's Rail Monias benschi from Madagascar 

by D. A. Turner 

Received 28 April ip8o 

Rand (1936) describes Bensch's Rail as "a terrestrial bird of the low brush 
forest in the Sub-desert", commenting that there was no evidence at all that 
it ever flies. Later Milon eta/. (1973) merely comment that like other members 
of the family it flies poorly and always seems to prefer to escape from danger 
by running away, no matter what degree of danger facing it. 

During the past 10 years I have had the opportunity of spending many 
hours observing this species in southwestern Madagascar where its range 

241 [Bull.B.O.C. 19S1: 101(1)] 

appears to be restricted to the dense Didiera woodland between two rivers, 
the Mangoky and the Fiherenana. Over much of the area it is common and 
at times abundant, and once its distinctive call is known, it is quite easy to 
locate as small groups move about through the dry Didiera woodland that is 
so characteristic of the southwestern corner of the island. 

In the evening of 19 February 1980 while walking through an area of 
dense Didierea thicket some 28 km north of Tulear, I heard a group of these 
birds calling, but for some time was unable to locate them, until quite 
unexpectedly I noticed a pair calling from the lower branches of a tree 10-12 
feet above the ground. This in itself surprised me as I too had always believed 
them to be entirely terrestrial in habits. The pair continued to climb around 
the branches of the tree despite their rather ungainly gait, constantly bobbing 
up and down just as they do when walking through the brush. As dusk was 
fast approaching I assumed the birds were settling down to roost for the 
night, but after a few moments and obviously aware of my presence less than 
20 yards away they became rather agitated and to my utter amazement flew 

Whereas the female flew down to the ground with a rather weak flight, 
the male flew strongly and purposefully on an almost direct flight for some 
yards until lost from sight in the dense brush. This is, as far as I can ascertain, 
the first instance of this species, or any Mesite actually flying, and certainly 
disproves all previous statements that Monias benschi is a flightless bird. 
Although not in any way related to the Rallidae, all three Mesites of 
Madagascar possess well developed wings, and it seems probable that all are 
quite capable of flight, but that due to their being terrestrial birds of either 
forest or dense scrub they rarely need to do so. 

References : 

Milon, P., Petter, J. J. & Randrianasolo, G. 1973. Faune de Madagascar, XXXV Oiseaux. 
ORSTOM Tananarive : CNRS Paris. 

Rand, A. L. 1936. The distribution and habits of Madagascar birds. Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. 
Hist. 72: 143-499. 

Address: D. A. Turner, P.O. Box 48019, Nairobi, Kenya. 

© British Ornitholologists' Club 1981. 

A new subspecies of Anairetes agraphia (Tyrannidae) 
from northern Peru 

by Thomas S. Schulenberg and Gary L. Graham 

Received 14 April 19 So 

In 1978 we were part of a field party from the Louisiana State University 
Museum of Zoology (LSUMZ) that conducted an ornithological investi- 
gation of the previously unexplored mountains lying between the Rios 
Utcubamba and Chiriaco, in the Department of Amazonas, northern Peru. 
This range, known locally as the Cordillera Colan, rises above the arid Rio 
Maranon valley to an elevation of at least 3450 m. At approximately 3050 m, 
cloud forest gives way to pajonal, a wet grassland with scattered bushes and 
low trees. In the upper reaches of the forest, from 2950 m up to treeline, we 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981:101(1)] 242 

collected a series of Anairetes (= Uromyias) agraphia. (See Traylor (1977) on 
reasons for merging these genera.) Prior to 1978, this Peruvian endemic was 
known only from the Quillabamba - Ollantaitambo area of the Rio Urubamba 
drainage, Department of Cuzco (Chapman 191 9, Parker & O'Neill 1980); 
from the Cordillera Vilcabamba, Department of Cuzco (Weske 1972); and 
from the Cordillera Carpish, Department of Huanuco (O'Neill & Parker 
1976). In 1979 another LSUMZ field party collected a specimen at Mashua, 
3350 m, east of Tayabamba on the trail to Ongon, Department of La 
Libertad, about halfway between the Cordilleras Colan and Carpish. 

The Cordillera Colan population appears to be a well-marked new sub- 
species that we propose to call : 

Anairetes agraphia plengei subsp. nov. 

Type: Adult male (skull 60% ossified) ; Louisiana State University Museum 
of Zoology No. 88474; Cordillera Colan, NE La Peca, about 5°34'S, 
78°i9'W, Department of Amazonas, Peru, elevation 3025 m; 29 August 
1978 ; collected by T. S. Schulenberg; original number 988. 

Diagnosis: Breast pattern similar to A. agraphia squamigera O'Neill & 
Parker in having the breast feathers tipped as well as edged with white. 
Differs from all known populations of A. agraphia by the following charac- 
ters: upperparts, especially back, and all but outer pair of retrices dark 
olivaceous-brown, not warm buff-brown; background colour of breast 
whiter with no yellow tinge; sides of breast greyer without a yellow-brown 
tint; belly whiter, extent and intensity of yellow much reduced. 

Measurements of the type {mm): Wing (chord) 57.3, tail 66.4, tarsus 18.3, 
culmen from base 13.7; weight 10 g. 

Range: Known only from the type locality. 

Specimens examined: Anairetes agilis (20). Colombia, 6 unsexed (American 
Museum of Natural History = AMNH 132238, 143 5 74-143 5 75, 176544, 
499063-499064); Ecuador, u<3<3 (AMNH 124625-124626, 124623, 173410- 
173411, 180462, 183992, 499057-499058, 499060-499061), 29? (AMNH 
499059, 499062), 1 unsexed (AMNH 145874). 

A. agraphia agraphia (11). Dpto. Cuzco, Peru: Cordillera Vilcabamba, 
i2 3 6'S, 73°3o'W, 433 (AMNH 820544-820547), 1$ (AMNH 820548); 
Cordillera Vilcabamba, i2° 37 'S, 73^3 'W, itf (AMNH 820398), 3 Q2 
(AMNH 820399, 820448, 820460); 24 km NE Abra Malaga, itf (LSUMZ 
78796); San Luis, i<3 (LSUMZ 78797). 

A. agraphia squamigera (2). Dpto. Huanuco, Peru: Bosque Cutirragra, 1$ 
(LSUMZ 74301, holotype); Punta de Esperanza, 1$ (LSUMZ 79704). 

A. agraphia squamigera > plengei (1). Dpto. La Libertad, Peru: Mashua, itf 
(LSUMZ 92837). 

A. agraphia plengei (5). Dpto. Amazonas, Peru: Cordillera Colan, 4(5c? 
(LSUMZ 88470, 88472-88474), 1$ (LSUMZ 88471). 

Etymology: It is a pleasure to name this new flycatcher for Manuel A. 
Plenge, in recognition of his contributions to our knowledge of Peruvian 
birds, and of the assistance he has so generously offered visiting orni- 

243 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 

Remarks: The specimen from Mashua (LSUMZ 92837), a locality geo- 
graphically between the type localities and known ranges of squamigera and 
plengei, resembles squamigera ventrally, but dorsally the characters approach 
plengei. A specimen of squamigera from Huanuco (LSUMZ 79704) shows some 
reduction in the intensity of yellow on the abdomen, but not enough to fall 
within the known variation of plengei. There appears to be no significant size 
variation within the species. 

In addition to the 5 skins from Cordillera Colan, we preserved 3 complete 
(LSUMZ 90079-90081) and 2 partial (LSUMZ 88470, 88474) skeletons. The 
LSUMZ also contains a previously unreported alcoholic specimen (LSUMZ 
76902) collected at Punta de Esperanza, Department of Huanuco. 

Most of our specimens from the Cordillera Colan were caught in mist-nets. 
We saw Anairetes agraphia plengei in life on only 4 occasions during 3 weeks of 
fieldwork. Our brief observations on its behaviour are similar to those 
reported in Parker & O'Neill (1980). 

Anairetes agraphia closely resembles A. agilis ^ a monotypic species which 
occupies similar habitats from southwestern Venezuela to northern Ecuador 
(Traylor 1979). Morphological differences between these 2 taxa were 
reviewed by O'Neill & Parker (1976). Although 3 subspecies of A. agraphia 
are now recognized, the distinguishing characters of the species are consistent 
throughout its range. We feel that the relationship of these taxa are best 
expressed by maintaining each as a separate species, and by considering each 
to be an allospecies within the Anairetes agilis superspecies. 

Acknowledgements: Philip J. Barbour, Linda J. Barkley, David R. Hunter, Manuel 
Sanchez, Klaus Wehr and Morris D. Williams participated in and helped to make the 1978 
expedition to Cordillera Colan a success. We are most grateful to John S. Mcllhenny, 
E. W. Mudge, H. Irving Schweppe, Laura R. Schweppe, and Babette M. Odom for their 
support of the fieldwork of the LSUMZ. Antonio Brack E., Marc Dourojeanni R., Susana 
Moller H., and Carlos Ponce P. of the Direccion General Forestal y de Fauna of the 
Ministerio de Agricultura, Lima, Peru continue their support of the LSUMZ field studies. 
We acknowledge the continued cooperation of Aeroperu. Gary R. Graves, John P. O'Neill, 
Theodore A. Parker, III, and J. V. Remsen, Jr., read and commented on the manuscript. 
We gratefully acknowledge a grant to Schulenberg in 1979 from the Frank M. Chapman 
Memorial Fund. Without the help of Gustavo del Solar R. of Chiclayo, Peru, our expedition 
would not have been the success it was. 

References : 

Chapman, F. M. 1919. Descriptions of proposed new birds from Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, and 

Colombia. Proc.Biol. Soc. Washington 32: 253-268. 
O'Neill, J. P. & Parker, T. A. III. 1976. New subspecies of Schi-^peaca fuliginosa and Uromyias 

agraphia from Peru. Bull. Brit. Orn. Club 96 : 1 36-141 . 
Parker, T. A. Ill & O'Neill, J. P. 1980. Notes on little known birds of the upper Urubamba 

Valley, southern Peru. Auk 97: 167-176. 
Traylor, M. A. Jr. 1977. A classification of the Tyrant Flycatchers (Tyrannidae). /?#//. Mus. 

Comp.Zool. 148: 129-184. 

— 1979- "Tyrannidae" in Traylor, M. A., Jr. (Ed.) Checklist of Birds of the World. Vol. 
VIII: 1-245. Cambridge. Mass. : Museum of Comparative Zoology. 
Weske, J. S. 1972. The distribution of the avifauna in the Apurimac Valley of Peru with 
respect to environmental gradients, habitat, and related species. Unpublished Ph.D. 
thesis, Norman, Oklahoma: Univ. Oklahoma. 

Address: T. S. Schulenberg and G. L. Graham, Museum of Zoology, Louisiana State 
University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70893, USA. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

[Bull.B.O.C. ipSi: ioi(i)] 244 

A new subspecies of Lappet-faced Vulture Torgos 
tracheliotus from the Negev Desert, Israel 

by Bert el Brum, Heinrich Mendelssohn and John Bull 

Received 20 May 19 So 

The difference in appearance between the Lappet-faced Vulture Torgos* 
tracheliotus of the relatively recently discovered Negev population and the 
African birds is so pronounced that we decided to investigate the taxonomic 
status of this new population. 

The Lappet-faced Vulture was first described as Vultur tracheliotus by 
J. R. Forster {in Levaillant (1791): Reise Innere Afrika, Vol. 3 : 363, pi. 12): 
type locality, Cape Colony, South Africa. In 1829 H. Smith (in Griffith's 
(1829) Animal Kingdom 6 : 164) described the northern population from Nubia 
(Sudan) as Vultur nubicus. It was said to lack the ear-lappets so characteristic 
of the birds found further south. The border between the 2 populations (now 
T. t. tracheliotus and T. /. nubicus') is, for unclear reasons, usually given as being 
the 'Zambezi River (Friedmann 1930), but our investigation indicates that 
both the distinguishing features of, as well as the border between, the 2 
previously described subspecies have been erroneously stated in the past. 

Meinertzhagen (1930) pointed to the probable cause of the confusion. 
He states : "A narrow fold of skin, about a quarter of an inch wide and four 
inches long, runs from in front of the ear down the neck and forms a type of 
lappet - a feature which almost disappears in dried skins." Later, he com- 
ments : "If dried skins are examined, these lappets cannot be found as they 
shrivel up. But out of the many hundreds of birds seen alive in Egypt, not 
one could be said to be devoid of lappets." Hence the size of the lappets, as 
well as their actual colour, cannot be ascertained from examining skins, 
which will invariably lead to the conclusion that T. t. nubicus, the subspecies 
without lappets, is found throughout the species' range.The fading and shrink- 
ing of the wattles in dried specimens presumably is the reason why nubicus 
has not been recognized in most recent publications. 

Examination of 49 skins at The American Museum of Natural History 
(AMNH), the National Museum of Natural History, the Field Museum, the 
British Museum (Natural History), the Tel Aviv University and the Giza 
Zoo indeed reveal that even remnants of lappets are very rare, even in South 
African birds. The colour of the head and neck in the specimens varies from 
pale orange to (most commonly) pale brownish, very different from the vivid 
colours of most live birds. There was, however, a difference, not invariable, 
in the colour of the thighs of the adult birds (which are best distinguished 
from immatures by the lack of down on the head). All immatures have brown 
thighs but in the adults of African origin the colour is found to vary. Of 26 
adults skins from Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, South Africa and 
Angola and 2 from the southernmost part of Sudan only 2 had brown thighs, 
all the others having cream or white thighs. A photograph of an adult bird 
from Rhodesia (P. F. Mundy) as well as 3 from Kenya (B. Bruun and H. 
Mendelssohn) show white thighs. In contrast 10 adult skins from Egypt 

*Torgos is considered by some to be a synonym of Aegypius ; e.g. Stresemann and 
Amadon in Mayr & Cottrell: Checklist of Birds of the World Vol. I (revised) 1979: 307-309; 
Amadon in Condor 79 (1977): 413-416. 

245 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 

and northern Sudan revealed only 2 with cream coloured thighs, the 
remainder having brown thighs. The overall plumage colour in this latter 
group, in contrast with the thighs, appeared somewhat paler. 

Examination of 7 live birds from Kenya (6 in the Baltimore Zoo and one 
in the Giza Zoo) revealed large lappets, bright red head and white or cream 
thighs in all. A single live bird from Egypt in the Regent's Park Zoo, 
London, revealed a pink head, definite but somewhat smaller lappets and 
brown thighs. Measurements did not significantly differ in the 2 groups when 
either specimens or live birds were measured. 

It thus appeares that the two subspecies T. /. tracheliotus and T. /. nubicus 
can best be separated by the thigh colour of the adult (white to cream in 
nominate tracheliotus, brown in nubicus), size of lappets (very large in 
tracheliotus, somewhat smaller but quite distinct, in nubicus) and colour of 
head (bright red in tracheliotus, pink in nubicus). 

If these distinguishing characteristics are used it is found that the border 
between the two subspecies lies in Sudan at about 1 5°N (if thigh colour alone 
is considered) or in Somalia and Ethiopia at about 8°N (if field descriptions 
are primarily relied upon), but certainly not at the Zambezi River almost 
1 500 miles further south as the vulture flies. 

Fuertes' illustration of a Lappet-faced Vulture from Ethiopia (from either 
a live bird or a freshly killed specimen) clearly shows the enormous lappets 
and bright red colours of head and neck so characteristic of nominate 
tracheliotus (Fuertes 1930), while the Somalia birds (Archer & Godman 1937) 
appear to be of the nominate race as they have white or cream thighs and are 
said to have livid red heads and necks. However, the statement that they lack 
lappets below the ears is most puzzling and requires clarification. 

In West Africa this is a scarce vulture (Bannerman 1930) and scant data 
exist. Pending further information, West African birds may be assigned to 
nominate tracheliotus. 

Examination of the Negev birds shows significant differences from both 
of the African subspecies great enough to justify separation of this population 
as a distinct, new subspecies. This may be called: 

Torgos tracheliotus negevensis, subsp. nov. 

Type: male AMNH # 824179; collected by Heinrich Mendelssohn in 
northern Negev, Israel, 10 August 1957 as immature: kept in captivity in 
Tel Aviv until its death 27 May 1979. 

Diagnosis: Differs from all races of T. tracheliotus by having greyish-brown 
head with pink nape and only, even in live birds, the smallest vestige of 
lappets. A thick covering of down on the head persists in the adult of 
negevensis in contrast to the almost completely naked heads of adults of both 
tracheliotus and nubicus. The thighs of adults are dark brown or brown, never 
light brown {nubicus) or white {tracheliotus). The colour of the back and upper 
wings is paler brown than in nubicus, which in turn is not as dark as in 
tracheliotus. Immatures less than 1-2 years of age cannot with certainty be 
distinguished from the other 2 subspecies, but after that age the head and 
neck of both tracheliotus and nubicus are pink or red, whereas negevensis remains 
greyish brown. Immatures of all 3 subspecies have brown or dark brown 

Measurements: Although negevensis to us appeared larger than the other 2 
subspecies, measurements have failed to confirm this. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 19 Si: i o i( i ) ] 246 

Range: The only known breeding population is found in the southern 
part of the Negev Desert in Israel. 

Remarks: It will be evident that nubicus is to some extent intermediate 
between the southern nominate tracheliotus and the northern negevensis. The 
latter however is the most distinct of all populations of the species. In the 
field it is strikingly different from its African counterpart, closely resembling 
the Cinereous Vulture Aegypius monachus and best distinguished by the one or 
two faint bands of light brown along the underwing coverts. The feet of the 
Lappet-faced Vulture are lead grey, but yellow in the Cinereous Vulture. 
From above, some contrast between the upperwing-coverts and the darker 
flight feathers is noticeable in the Lappet-faced Vulture. The Lappet-faced 
Vulture is best distinguished from the Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus by its 
larger size, darker colour and flat silhouette when soaring (the Griffon 
Vulture soars with wings in a shallow V), and only slight, as opposed to very 
strong, contrast between the upper wing-coverts and the darker flight 
feathers. The redness present on the nape of the Negev birds during court- 
ship or excitement is often not distinguishable in the field, and the head may 
look uniformly pale brown. 

History: The first indication of a population existing in the Negev occurred 
in 1938 when Dr. Rodenko, a Russian medical doctor who practiced in Jaffa, 
shot an immature bird at Nebi Nussa near Jericho. The skin was brought 
to the taxidermist associated with H.M., who noted the lack of skin folds in 
this bird; but the first seen by H.M. in nature were during an expedition to the 
Negev in 1945 (an expedition that was without permission, H.M. finishing 
up in prison), when the Lappet-faced Vulture was common. H.M. was 
impressed by the large numbers of their huge nests, which were conspicuous 
features of the landscape of the Arava Valley. At that time, there were not 
many herds of goats, but there were many gazelles on which the Lappet- 
faced Vultures might have been feeding. In 1946 Hardy (1947) obtained a 
Lappet-faced Vulture that had been caught in a jackal trap near Nurnub, 
southeast of Beer Sheba. It was for a time housed in H.M.'s small zoo in Tel 
Aviv, and later sent to the London Zoo, where it was on display until its 
death in 1971. Since then our knowledge of the Lappet-faced Vultures in the 
Negev has greatly increased, but has unfortunately coincided with a marked 
decrease in the population. In 1975 only 6 nesting pairs were found, and in 
1979 only 4, of which only 3 were able to produce young. Nests are con- 
spicuous in trees in the wadis, and it is unlikely that recent counts have under- 
estimated to any degree. The cause of this decline is not clear. Pellets found 
near the nests indicate that the main food is goat carcasses, yet despite a great 
increase in the goat population during the last 10 years, the Lappet-faced 
Vulture population has declined. Recently however, the Israeli government 
decided to urge the Bedouins to reduce their herds because the over-grazing 
was destroying the natural habitats and the southern Negev, where most of 
the Lappet-faced Vultures nest, is one of the areas in which herds of goats 
were almost completely eliminated. So, at the present time at least, the 
Lappet-faced Vultures have been deprived of their main food. The Israel 
Nature Reserves Authority supply some food, but only once a week, which is 
not enough to rear the nestling, though recently feeding has been intensified, 
aided by funds from the World Wildlife Fund. Young birds spend about 6 
months with their parents, but then leave the area and disperse, apparently 

247 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: ioi(i)] 

scattering over a large area such as Arabia (Courtenay-Thompson 1972, 
Gallagher 1967, Warr 1978), in which they are not offered any kind of 
protection, and being so conspicuous have little chance of surviving to 
maturity. In the Negev only adult birds are seen, with their young of that 
year, but no immatures. Formerly, when the population was larger, im- 
mature birds occurred in the Jordan Valley as far north as Jericho and in the 
western Negev, where some (or perhaps many) died by feeding on thallium 
poisoned rodents (Mendelssohn 1975). 

The Negev population of the Lappet-faced Vulture at present consists of 
probably less than a score of birds. The Tel Aviv University, under the 
directorship of H.M., has initiated a captive breeding programme on the 
basis of 4 birds, 3 of which are 4 years old and the fourth an adult which was 
found in 1978 with an injured wing. Such a captive breeding programme 
may be the only way of saving this subspecies from extinction. 

Acknowledgements: We have received continuous and invaluable help from Dean Amadon. 
Others who have generously given us advice are David Ferguson, John Fitzpatrick, 
Michael D. Gallagher, S. Graham, Philippe Grandjean, Hassan Hafez, Harry Hoogstraal, 
Michael Jennings, Ben King, Lawrence Mason, James F. Monk, Peter F. Mundy, D. W. 
Snow, Frank Walker, F. E. Warr, George Watson and David Wood. Their help is greatly 

References : 

Archer, G. F. & Godman, A. J. 1937. Birds of British Somaliland and the Gulf of Aden. Vol. I. 

Courtenay-Thompson, F. C. W. 1972. Checklist Birds of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. 

Saudi Arabia Nat. Hist. Soc. J. 6. 
Friedmann, H. 1930. Birds of Ethiopia and Kenya Colony. Bull, if), U.S. Nat. Mus. 
Fuertes, L. A. 1930. Album of Abyssinian Birds and Mammals. Chicago. 
Gallagher, M. D. 1977. Birds of Jabal Akhdar. The Scientific Results of the Oman Flora 

and Fauna Survey 1975./. Oman Study. Spec. Rep. 1 : 27-58. 
Hardy, E. 1947. The Northern Lappet-faced Vulture in Palestine — a new record for Asia. 

Auk 65 : 471-2. 
Meinertzhagen, R. 1930. NichoWs Birds of Egypt. London. 
Mendelssohn, H. 1975. Report on the status of some bird species in Israel in 1974. Bulletin 

of the International Council for Bird Preservations XII : 265-270. 
Warr, F. E. 1978. Birds recorded in the Arabian Gulf States. Priv. printing. 
Addresses: Dr. Bertel Bruun, 52 East 73rd Street, New York, N.Y. 10021, U.S.A. 

Dr. Heinrich Mendelssohn, Dept. of Zoology, Tel Aviv University, 155 Herzl Street, 

Tel Aviv, Israel. 

John Bull, Dept. of Ornithology, American Museum of Natural History, Central Park 

West at 79th Street, New York, New York 10024, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Nineteenth Century bird records from Tristan da Cunha 

by W. R. P. Bourne and A. C. F. David 

•s w 

Received 8 May 1980 

At the beginning of the 1 9th century Tristan da Cunha was the most impor- 
tant breeding-place for seabirds in the temperate South Atlantic. It also had 3 
highly-distinct landbirds: a flightless moorhen Gallinula nesiotis, a thrush 
Nesocichla eremita, and a bunting Nesospz\a acunhae. By the end of the century 
the moorhen, the bunting, and breeding by 2 of the largest seabirds, the 
Wandering Albatross Diomedea exulans and a giant petrel Macronectes sp., had 
been recorded for the last time, while many of the other birds had become 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981; 101(1)] 248 

hard to find. Beintema (1972) has reviewed the information about the moor- 
hen, whose very existence had been doubted (Eber 1961), and Brooke (1979) 
some other old records. It may be useful to examine the old records again 
in the light of an unpublished account by John MacGillivray, who visited 
the island in H.M.S. Herald in November 1852 and appears to have left the 
best early report. 

The history of the Tristan group and Gough Island to the south has been 
reviewed by Wace & Holdgate (1976). The islands appear to have been 
discovered by the Portuguese in 1505-6, and in the following century were 
explored by the Dutch, who found little use for them. They are first known 
to have been exploited by John Patton of the vessel Industry -, probably from 
Philadelphia, who spent 9 months there in 1790 and obtained 5600 sealskins 
for the China market. They were visited again, briefly, by Lord Macartney's 
embassy to China on 31 December 1792; they found that there were still 
many seals, sea-lions (elephant seals?), penguins and albatrosses, and that 
the low ground was still covered in sedge and small shrubs. Unfortunately 
the weather compelled them to leave before they could walk round the island, 
which is a pity in view of the value of their observations at St Paul Island 
(Staunton 1797, Barrow 1806). 


181 3. In February-March 1 8 1 3, before colonisation, Mr Lewis Fitzmaurice, 
Master of H.M.S. Semiramis, reported in his journal (at the Hydrographic 
Department) that there were "thousands of birds" in the vicinity, and "the 
number of birds which surrounded the ship were innumerable ... we had a 
short interval of calm in which we caught a great number of Albatrosses 
with a hook and line some of them measuring from tip to tip of the wings 
13 and 14 feet". 

1816-17. The island was visited by a number of warships at the time of 
formal colonisation, including H.M.S. Griffon, H.M.S. Julia H.M.S. Phaeton, 
H.M.S. Racoon and H.M.S. Spey. Between them their masters recorded in their 
journals that there were a great number of seals, sea lions and penguins, 
ample wood, celery and sorrel, but no venomous reptiles or vermin of any 
sort. Lt. D. Rice (18 16) of H.M.S. Falmouth reported that "the earth being 
continually wet and in a sodden state and undermined by deep holes made 
by the birds that frequent the Mountains, vegetation is consequently back- 
ward . . . wild goats are not very plentiful as we have seen but one and that 
on the side of the Snowy Peak. Wild Hogs are numerous but the thick cover 
of the lower hills on the western side of the island makes it extremely 
difficult to take them as they confine themselves to the most difficult and 
inpenetrable and unfrequented places". There are numerous references to 
shooting parties. 

Captain Dugald Carmichael (18 19) arrived with the garrison on 28 
November 1 8 1 6 to investigate the natural productions of the island, climbed 
the peak on the following 8 January and left on 30 March. He makes it clear 
that despite the presence of casual visitors and introduced animals for at 
least a quarter of a century there was still much vegetation on the low ground, 
and implies that most of the breeding birds were found where it was more 
open higher up the mountain, where petrel burrows penetrated the soil in 
all directions. The fate of his specimens is discussed by Stresemann (1953); 

249 [BulLB.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 

they were placed in the Bullock collection and sold at auction when it was 
dispersed in 18 19. Most have now been lost, but some of the most important 

In addition to the 3 landbirds and more obvious seabirds, Carmichael 
reports the presence of 6 petrels, including a giant petrel Macronectes sp., the 
Broad-billed Prion Pachyptila vittata, "Procellaria cinerea" and 3 smaller 
species. It is usually assumed that "P. cinerea" was the Grey Petrel, which 
was given this name by Gmelin. Stresemann thought that the specimen had 
been lost; however, it was bought by Leach, who was associated with the 
British Museum, and was doubtless the Kerguelen Petrel Pterodroma 
brevirostris, at that time still undescribed, which still survives in the British 
Museum's Sub-department of Ornithology at Tring (Elliott 1957). The type 
oiFregetta tropica melanoleuca Salvadori from Tristan (via the Bullock Collec- 
tion) at Turin (Bourne 1962) is doubtless one of his smaller petrels. 

1824. The eccentric itinerant artist Augustus Earle (1832) was left behind 
by his ship the Duke of Gloucester on 26 March 1824 and rescued by the 
Admiral Cockburn on its way to Australia in November (Wace 1969). He does 
not appear to have been a very good naturalist, since he was the first to report 
2 canards regularly retailed by subsequent authors, that the penguins lay 3 
eggs and that the moorhen had a spur on its wing. Possibly they can be 
attributed to the "Governor", Corporal William Glass, described by Nolloth 
(1856) as a Scottish peasant from Kelso, who stayed behind when the 
garrison was evacuated in 1821 and led the community until he died in 1853. 
Earle describes and illustrates how Glass set about energetically "improving" 
the island with traditional Scottish techniques, constructing half a dozen 
sturdy stone houses, burning the natural vegetation, planting potatoes, 
rearing cattle, sheep, pigs, poultry and dogs, and slaughtering the wildlife. 
Cats had already run wild and wiped out feral chickens. 

1829. H.M.S. Jaseur called on 18 January, and the Commander, M. Lyons, 
reported that "William Glen (sic) the Senior or oldest inhabitant . . . stated . . . 
that wild Hogs and Goats were very numerous, the former destructive to 
their cultivated ground". 

1835. Stirling (1843) saw the gallinule on 12 October on the way to the 
Indian Ocean. 

1842. We are indebted to Dr. Nigel Wace for notes and a partial copy of the 
records made by Oswald Brierly (1842, Milner & Brierly 1869), who visited 
Tristan 18-21 March on the yacht Wanderer on the way to Australia. He 
reported the presence of geese, ducks, Muscovy ducks, a thrush and a bird 
like the Green Linnet (Greenfinch Car due lis cbloris), and that they left with 
pigs, sheep, monkeys (presumably from South America?), albatrosses and 
Island Cocks alive on the deck. They obtained 2 of the latter, described as 
having red legs (Earle said they were yellow) and a short wing with a spur; 
they were heard "chuckling" in the vegetation and were caught with dogs 
on moonlit nights. 

Brooke (1979) quotes a comment by Layard (1867) on the number of 
albatrosses that he saw at Tristan at Christmas 21 years earlier. In the note on 
specimens collected by Nolloth (1856), discussed later, Layard reports 
"Corporal Glass mentioned to me in 1842 that the only bird that they had 
besides sea-fowl was a water-hen . . .", which indicates that Layard's visit 
also occurred in 1 842, though he does not appear to have discovered much 

[Bull.B.O.C. ip S i: i o i( i) ] 250 

else about the island. He states that he figured 2 caterpillars, which suggests 
that there may still be an account of his visit to be located somewhere. 

1852. Popular attention was first directed to the moorhen by a brief note 
by Gurney (1853) reporting that a Mr. Strange of Sidney had met someone 
familiar with a "wingless" bird (then very fashionable) on Tristan. This 
could have been Earle, who lived in Sydney in the late 1820s, or Brierly, who 
remained in Australian waters until 1850. It seems more likely that it was 
John MacGillivray, who called at Tristan on the way to Australia in H.M.S. 
Herald on 1 1-1 2 November 1852 (Denham 1853). He collected the type of the 
native thrush (Gould 1855) but left the ship in Australia, so that his notes, 
summarised later, were never published. 

1856. Captain M. S. Nolloth (1856) landed on 18 March 1856 to report on 
the state of the island for the Governor of Cape Colony, Sir George Grey. 
The low ground around the settlement had largely been cleared, and the rest 
of the underwood up to a sharp line at 400 ft had been affected over the last 7 
years by a disease which caused small white spots. He reported that the 
Island Cock had green feet, and that large numbers of seabirds still came to 
roost on the high ground after dark, where the islanders took many eggs, 
especially from the albatross and black sea-eaglet. He notes that the last hogs 
had been shot within the previous decade and that goats were becoming 
scarce, and speculated that wild cats were taking the goats' kids. He saw 
numerous mice but was told no rats had yet been seen. 

Nolloth's specimens were examined by E. L. Layard, who lists the Common 
Albatross Diomedea exulans, Mollymaw D. melanophrys, 2 species of petrel 
Vrocellaria and 2 of tern, and eggs of these, the penguin and "gallimele". One 
of his eggs labelled "Diomedea melanophris Tristan da Cunha E.L.L. 676", 
bought at a London sale in 1907 and now at Aberdeen, measures 92.5 x 
60 mm, which is too short for that species and agrees with the Yellow-nosed 
Albatross Diomedea chlororhynchos. 

1861. The various accounts of the "gallimele" aroused the curiosity of Sir 
George Grey, and Buller (1888) reports the outcome. "In the course of time 
a deputation from the inhabitants came to Cape Colony to seek relief from 
the Governor on account of a general failure of the crops, and a young girl 
(a native of the island) remained behind as a servant at Government House. 
After several years she was seized by a yearning to revisit the island of her 
birth ... Sir George told her that she might go, but that he would never 
take her back unless she brought with her some of the flightless rails, with 
which she professed to be quite familiar. A year afterwards the girl presented 
herself at Government House bringing with her a cage containing five of these 
birds. They were put at once into the aviary, and during the night two of them 
had their heads torn off by jackals in an adjoining compartment. The three 
survivors were forwarded to Dr. Sclater, who then characterised and named 
this hitherto unknown species". 

According to Sclater (1861) all the birds were sent to England, though 2 
more died on the way and arrived in spirit. An immature was described as 
the type and deposited in the British Museum, where it was eventually 
joined by the survivor when it died in the London Zoo. There is also a large 
but otherwise typical moorhen's egg which was obtained for Lady Grey by 
the Tristan clergyman, W. F. Taylor. These 3 specimens appear to be all that 
remains of this bird. Beintema (1972) could trace only one skin because the 

2 5 1 [BulLB.O.C. 1981:101(1)} 

others were then being moved from London to Tring. They will all be 
discussed elsewhere. 

1867. In the remark book of H. M.S. Galatea at the Hydrographic Depart- 
ment it is reported that the Tristan indigenous tree was much reduced by 
cutting and disease, and that the wild goats which used to be seen in flocks of 
two or three hundred had not been found for 2-3 years. 

1868. Lt. R. M. Sperling (1872) visited Tristan in H.M.S. Racoon, where he 
secured eggs of the Wandering Albatross and giant petrel and was informed 
that the feral cats were preying upon the moorhen. According to Layard 
(1868) Sperling also obtained a singularly marked white egg attributed to a 
"black petrel", which seems likely to have belonged to the Brown Noddy 
Anous stolidus, described to MacGillivray as a "grey petrel". 

1869. Layard (1869 a,b) reports that Captain G. T. Een of the schooner 
Telegraph brought back a consignment of live gallinules, 3 specimens of the 
"island thrush" in alcohol and its eggs, a finch (Hyphantornis}) and a "lot of 
eggs of sea-fowl" from "the islands around Tristan da Cunha". Some more 
gallinules were sent to the London Zoo, and Beintema (1972) has identified 3 
sterna at Cambridge and a skin that reached New York in the Rothschild 
Collection as those of the Gough Moorhen Gallinula comert, the first known 
specimens. Brooke (1979) has confirmed that the Telegraph left Gough Island 
on 31 May, and the specimens from there may have included also the first 
examples of the Gough Bunting Rowettia goughensis. The vessel could also 
have visited the Tristan group, however, in which case the "finch" could 
have been the Tristan Bunting Nesospi^a acunhae, which was not in fact 
described until 1873 from a specimen collected by Carmichael (Stresemann 
1953), and possibly also an example of the extinct population from the main 
island of Tristan. Although Layard sent a collection of eggs to the British 
Museum in that year (Walters 1979), unfortunately none of the above 
specimens can be traced there (C. J. O. Harrison and M. J. Walters in litt.). 

1873. The naturalists on H.M.S. Challenger spent most of their time in the 
Tristan group exploring the outlying islands, and only visited the main island 
on 15 October 1873, where they collected some conflicting information. 
They were informed that the bunting was extinct (Suhm 1876, Campbell 
1877), that the gallinule was now rare and only found high in the hills 
(Suhm 1876), but that the Wandering Albatross and giant petrel still bred 
(Moseley 1879). Suhm (1876) and Wyville Thomson (1878) reported that 
rats were present, but Moseley (1879) specifically states that they were not, 
though he also thought that there had formerly been rabbits (as well as pigs 
and goats), which also seems rather doubtful. Campbell (1877) finally 
discovered that the penguins only lay 2 eggs ; he was informed that they appear 
about 12 August and lay about a fortnight later; the eggs were starting to 
hatch at the time of his visit. 

At this point there ensues a gap in the ornithological records of a genera- 
tion, during which the islanders fell on hard times, since, with the advent of 
steam, ships ceased to pass by and call for fresh food on the way to Australia, 
while seals and whales had become scarce. They therefore had to fall back 
on their own resources. Traditionally their visits to the outer islands to 
obtain birds started about 1870 (Wace & Holdgate 1976), when they were 
also reported by the naturalists of the Challenger to be exterminating the feral 

[Bull.B.O.C. 19 8 1: 1 o 1(1) ] 252 

animals that had been allowed to multiply on Inaccessible Island. This 
suggests that by then the number of birds was beginning to decline markedly 
on the main island. By the time that the record was resumed in the early 
years of this century by Mrs. Barrow (19 10) some species were extinct there 
and the others were becoming hard to obtain. 

The damage has been attributed to rats, generally considered to have 
arrived with a shipwreck in 1882 (Brander 1940). It seems clear from the 
accounts summarised above that the decline must have started much earlier, 
and was probably cumulative over many decades. The impact of the hogs 
may have been serious on the low ground before the island was colonised. 
Earle (1832) found cats running wild by the 1820s, and by the 1850s the 
excellent observer Nolloth (1856) considered that cats were a threat even to 
young livestock, while later, Sperling (1872) was informed that they were 
responsible for the decline of the gallinule. The vegetation even appears to 
have declined, affected by a fungus in the 1 8 5 os (Nolloth 1856). There cannot 
have been much left for the rats. 


John MacGillivray was the son of the greatest British ornithologist of his 
day, William MacGillivray, the friend of J. J. Audubon, and their children 
were brought up together (MacGillivray 19 10). He was born in 1821, made 
important pioneer observations in the Outer Hebrides when he was only 19, 
and subsequently abandoned medical studies at Edinburgh to become 
naturalist successively on H.M.S. Fly (1842-6), H.M.S. Rattlesnake (1846-50) 
and H.M.S. Herald (1852—5) during the exploration of the southwest Pacific. 
He was an excellent field observer and collector who kept good notes but 
failed to write them up. He eventually fell out with the Navy and was 
discharged at Sydney, where he had his family, in 1855, but continued to 
collect in the area until his death in 1 867 (Whittell 1954, Calaby 1 974). 

MacGillivray spent 8 hours on Tristan da Cunha on 12 November 1852, 
during which time he walked through the settlement to the Hillpiece and 
back to the shore with Peter Green, a Dutch sailor who had been there 16 
years, who told him what was known about the natural history of the island. 
He made 16 pages of closely- written notes in his journal (MacGillivray 
1852-5), and prepared a summary for Sir Francis Beaufort preserved in the 
records of the Hydrographic Department. 

While this appears to be the best account of the birds of the island before 
the Norwegian expedition of 1937-8 (Hagen 1952), this statement merely 
demonstrates the difficulties facing an ornithological historian. MacGillivray 
states that in common with many later observers he often had difficulty 
identifying the garbled composite descriptions of the birds he was given, 
and he sometimes jumped to unjustified conclusions about their identity. 
Much of the information is no longer new, so it has been summarised with 
interpretive comments and references to other information in parentheses. 

(Rockhopper) Penguin Euayptes chrysocome. Lays 2 eggs, sometimes 3, 
starting about 28 August at one colony and 8-9 September at another. 
(Elliott (19 5 7) also discusses variations in laying date.) 

Goney (Wandering Albatross) Diomedea exulans. Tristan was still "a great 
breeding place" with nests scattered all over the summit. Eggs laid at Christ- 
mas gave rise to chicks which fledged in November (a trifle optimistic ?) if 
the eggs were not taken by the boys, one of whom had died of exposure. The 

253 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 

old birds changed over at the nest, and ate large squid. (They were extinct 
by the end of the century.) 

Molly or Mollymawk (Yellow-nosed Albatross) Diomedea chlororhynchos. 
This appeared to be the most abundant bird at the time of his visit (when it 
would have been incubating). Numbers were feeding over the kelp offshore, 
and following porpoises at 3 5°5 8'S, o6°34'E on 20 November. 

Peeoo (Sooty Albatross Phoebetriafusca). First reported at 36°29'S, 3i°5o'W 
on 1 November, but the information given for the island appears more 
applicable to the next species and is given there. (Mrs. Rowan remarks that 
his route would not have taken him near the breeding-places.) 

Nelly or Stinker (Giant Petrel Macronectes sp.). There was only one small 
"rookery", where it made "a small nest of decayed grass among the tussocks 
immediately behind the beach" and laid one long white egg, larger than that 
of the Molly, in August. (The laying date of this extinct population therefore 
agrees with that of the Northern Giant Petrel Macronectes halli, though Gough 
birds have green tips to the bill like the southern species M. giganteus (Bourne 
& Warham 1966, Johnstone et al. 1976).) 

Eglet or Black Eglet Procellaria atlantica Gould (= Great- winged Petrel 
Pterodroma macroptera). This was considered locally to be the most plentiful 
bird on the island. They arrived in July to dig long, winding burrows and 
then "cleared out" for a month before laying (apparently the first description 
of the pre-laying exodus of petrels). The birds were located with dogs and 
extracted from their holes with long, hooked sticks. (The description may 
also apply to the Atlantic Petrel Pterodroma incerta, which is more numerous 
on the low ground and nests a little later, but otherwise behaves similarly, 
on Gough Island. The reason for the name "eaglet", now modified to 
"haglet", will be obvious to anyone who has handled the birds.) 

Mud-bird. "This was never seen except on top of the mountain, where it 
breeds amongst ice and snow. I conjecture it to be Procellaria mollis Gould, 
as it is said to be half grey, half white, and the size of a pigeon." (The species 
which characteristically nests high in waterlogged holes on Gough Island is 
the Kerguelen Petrel Pterodroma brevirostris, collected on Tristan by Car- 

Whale-bird. Most abundant. (This name was used by sailors for prions, 
now included among the "night-birds" on Tristan. It was probably the 
Broad-billed Prion Pachyptila vittata, but there may have been some room for 

Night-bird. Reported to be smaller than the whale-bird, prone to come to 
fires at night, and to lay in December. (This name is often applied to nocturnal 
petrels indiscriminately elsewhere. "Nighthawk" is now most often used for 
the smaller gadfly petrels, but sometimes also for the Little Shearwater 
Puffinus assimilis. The species which lays in December and occurs over the low 
ground inland at night on Gough Island is the Soft-plumaged Petrel 
Pterodrama mollis.) 

(White-chinned Petrel) Procellaria (aequinoctialis) conspicillata. One collected 
at 36°oi'S, o5°2o'W on 15 November, and many following porpoises with 
albatrosses on 20 December. (Possibly this implies that the distinctive local 
race was more numerous then ?) 

(Grey Petrel Procellaria cinerea and Great Shearwater Puffinus gravis ?). 
Myriads of "Puffinus cinereus" were seen by MacGillivray (1852) from 28°W 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 254 

to i^°E when passing Tristan in the Rattlesnake in January 1847. During the 
voyage of the Herald he saw "Procellaria hasitata" (then sometimes used for 
the Grey Petrel) from 36 2C)'S, 3i°5o'W on 1 November. On 15 November 
he found "Puffinus cinereus" sitting on the water in flocks and collected several 
as well as the White-chinned Petrel discussed earlier. (Grey Petrels breed in 
the winter and appear to disperse south in summer, so most of these birds 
were probably Great Shearwaters. He narrowly missed anticipating the 
discovery of its breeding-place by over half a century, but the Tristanians do 
not appear to have been aware of the great colony on Nightingale Island at 
that time either.) 

(Little Shearwater Puffinus assimilis.) A small shearwater with the distinctive 
flight of this species was first seen with the large shearwaters on 1 November 
and again at sea off Tristan, where he speculated whether it was the night 
bird already discussed. 

"Thalassidroma fregetta" . A specimen was recognised and it was said to be 
abundant and to come to fires at night. (This name was used for the White- 
faced Storm-petrel Pelagodroma marina as well as storm-petrels of the genus 
Fregetta at that date; either might be expected and confused with the other. 
He later identified his specimen as F. tropica.) 

(Common Diving-Petrel) Pelecanoides(urinatrix). Seen off the landing-place. 

Sea-hen (Great Skua Catharacta skua). Ubiquitous; a pair followed 2 chicks 
out to the vessel. 

King-bird (Antarctic Tern Sterna vittata). Breeds in holes in the rocks in 

Woodpigeon (Brown Noddy Anous stolidus). Described as a "grey petrel'* 
and identified as "Procellaria glacialoides" (subsequently encountered as a 
vagrant by the naturalists of the Challenger), though a flock of dark terns 
was noticed from the boat. 

Woodhen, Woodcock, or Island Cock {Gallinula nesiotis). Reported to 
have become scarce on the cleared land, but still common elsewhere and 
heard clucking in the vegetation on the Hillpiece. It was said to be black all 
over with white patches under the wings and tail, which was kept cocked, 
and a red shield at the base of the bill. It was caught with dogs. (It seems 
possible that the variation reported in the amount of white on the flanks and 
in the colour of the legs, said to be green, yellow, or red, may be due to age ?) 

Thrush {Nesocichla eremita). Very tame, and sometimes caught with a 
string attached to a stick, and kept in captivity. The nest was made of grass 
and constructed halfway up a tree in the branches. It laid 4-5 speckled eggs. 
The stomach of the type contained earthworms and millipedes but no insects. 

Greenbird (Tristan Bunting Nesospi^a acunhae). An uncommon small green 
bird the size of a sparrow, but probably a finch. 

Acknowledgements: We are particularly indebted to Sir Hugh Elliott, Mrs. M. K. Rowan 
and Dr. Nigel Wace for assistance with historical material and comments on a draft in the 
light of their local knowledge. Also Mr. R. K. Brooke, Dr. Martin Holdgate, Dr. M. E. 
Richardson and Mr. Michael Walters for various additional assistance. 

References : 

Barrow, J. 1 806. Voyage to Cochinchina in the years 1792 and 1793. London. 

Barrow, K. M. 1910. Three year sin Tristan da Cunha. London. 

Beintema, A. J. 1972. The history of the island hen {Gallinula nesiotis) the extinct flightless 
gallinule of Tristan da Cunhn.Bull.Brit. Orn. CI. 92 : 106-1 1 5 . 

25 5 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 

Bourne, W. R. P. 1962. Accounts ofFregetta storm-petrels. In Palmer, R. S. (ed.), Handbook 
of North American Birds. Vol. 1 : 252. New Haven. 

Bourne, W. R. P. & Warham, J. 1966. Geographical variation in the giant petrels of the 
genus Macronectes. Ardea 54: 45-67. 

Brander, J. 1940. Tristan daCunha i) 06-1902, George Allen and Unwin: London. 

Brierly, O. 1842. Diary kept on board R.Y.S. Wanderer (Capt. Bushby, R.N.) voyaging from 
Plymouth to Australia. Ms ML A 5 28, Mitchell Library, Sydney, Australia. 

Brooke, R. K. 1979. Some mid-XIX century bird collections from Tristan da Cunha. 
Cormorant 7 : 24-26. 

Buller, W. L. 1888. A History of theBirds of New Zealand. 2nd edition. Vol. 2 : 104. London. 

Calaby, J. 1974. Article on John MacGillivray. In Pike, D. (ed.), Australian Dictionary of 
Biography 5 : 155. Melbourne. 

Campbell, G. 1877. Log-letters from the Challenger . Macmillan: London. 

Carmichael, D. 18 19. Some account of the island of Tristan da Cunha and its natural 
productions. Trans. Linn. Soc. Lond. 1 2 : 483-5 1 3 . 

Denham,H.M. 1853. A day on Tristan d'Acunha. Nautical Mag. 22: 183-189. 

Earle, A. 1832. Narra>ive of a nine months'' residence in New Zealand in 182J, together with a 
journal of a residence on Tristan d , Acunha. London. (Reprint edited by E. H. McCormick, 
Oxford University Press, 1966.) 

Eber, G. 1961. Vergleichende undersuchungen aum flugfalngen Teichuhn Gallinula 
chloropus und an der flugfahigen Inselralle Gallinula nesiotis.Bonn. Zool.Beitr. 1 2 : 247-3 1 5 • 

Elliott, H. F. I. 1957. A contribution to the ornithology of the Tristan da Cunha group. 
Ibis 99: 545-586. 

Gould, J. 1855. On some new species of birds collected by Mr. McGillivray. Proc. Zool. 
Soc. London 1855: 165. 

Gurney, J. H. 1853. Ona wingless bird of Tristan da Cunha. Zoologist 1853: 4017. 

Hagen, Y. 1952. The birds of Tristan da Cunha. Res. Norwegian Sci.Bxped. Tristan da Cunha 

1 9 37-3 8 > 2 °. 
Johnstone, G. W., Shaughnessy, P. D. & Conroy, J. W. H. 1976. Giant Petrels in the South 

Atlantic: New data for Gough Island. S. Afr.J. Antarct. Res. 6 : 19-22. 

Layard, E. L. 1867. TheBirds of South Africa. Cape Town. 

— 1 868. The South African Museum. S. Afr. Mag. 2(2) : 702-704. 

— 1 869a. The South African Museum. S. Afr. Mag. 2(3) : 467-468. 

— 1869b. Further notes on South African ornithology. Ibis 2(5) : 361-378. 
MacGillivray, J. 1852. Voyage of the Rattlesnake. London. 

— 1852-5. Journal of Observations aboard H. M.S. Herald. Ms ADM7-8 5 1 and 852, Public 
Record Office, London. 

MacGillivray, W. 19 10. The Life of William MacGillivray. London. 

Milner, J. & Brierly, O. 1869. The Cruise of the Galatea. London. 

Moseley, H. N. 1 879. Notes by a Naturalist on the Challenger. London. 

Nolloth, M. S. 1856. Visit of H.M.S. Frolic to Tristan da Cunha. Nautical Mag. 25 : 401-41 5. 

Rice, D. 18 16. Journal. Hydrographic Department Misc. Papers Vol. 87 (Ca4). 

Sclater, P. L. 1861. On the Island Hen of Tristan da Cunha. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1861 : 

Sperling, R. M. 1872. (Letter). Ibis 1872: 74-79. 

Staunton, G. L. 1797. An authentic account of an embassy from the King of Great Britain to the 
Emperor of China. 3 Vols. London. 

Stirling, W. 1 843 . Narrative of the wreck of the ship Tiger. Exeter. 

Stresemann, E. 1953. Birds collected by Captain Dugald Carmichael on Tristan da Cunha 
1816-1817.7^95: 146-147. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 1 01(1)] 256 

Suhm, R. von Willemoes. 1876. Preliminary report ... on observations made during the 
earlier part of the voyage of H. M.S. Challenger. Proc. Roy. Soc. London 24: 583-585. 

Wace, N. M. 1969. The discovery, exploitation and settlement of the Tristan da Cunha 
Islands. Proc. Roy. Geog. Soc. Austr., S. Austr. Branch 70 : 1 1-40. 

Wace, N. M. & Holdgate, M. W. 1976. Man and nature in the Tristan da Cunha Islands. 
/. U.C.N. Monograph 6. 

Walters, M. 1979. Eggs from the collection of E. L. Layard.Bull.Brit. Orn. CI. 99 : 40. 

Whittell, H. M. 1954. The Literature of Australian birds. Perth. 

Wyville Thomson, C. 1878. Voyage of the Challenger. The Atlantic. London. 

Addresses: W. R. P. Bourne, Zoology Department, Aberdeen University, Tillydrone 
Avenue, Aberdeen, Scotland. 

Lt. Cdr. A. C. F. David, R.N., Hydrographic Department, Taunton, Somerset 
TAi 2DN, England. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Distribution and biology of the White-cheeked Cotinga 
Zaratornis stresemanni, a high Andean frugivore 

by Theodore A. Parker, III 

Received 30 May 1980 

Though the avifauna of the massive Cordillera Occidental of the Peruvian 
Andes is now relatively well known, few of its endemic species have been 
studied in detail. Especially interesting from a biogeographical and ecological 
standpoint are those birds that inhabit the relict Temperate Zone woodlands 
that occur on the western slopes of the range between latitudes 8°S and i4°S, 
in an elevational range of 2500 m to 4500 m. One of the most exciting 
discoveries made by Maria and Hans-Wilhelm Koepcke during their explora- 
tions of these woodland patches was the previously undescribed White- 
cheeked Cotinga Zaratornis stresemanni. This thrush-sized bird was found, 
surprisingly, less than 70 air km east of Lima in the Oreopanax association 
forest of Zarate, above the Rimac River valley at 2700 m. The species was 
described from 2 female specimens collected in October 1953 (Koepcke 1954). 
When news of the discovery reached American ornithologists in 1954, 
another specimen, a female collected by M. A. Carriker above Yanac in 
northern Ancash in March 1932, was discovered in the collection of the 
Philadelphia Academy of Sciences, where overlooked for more than 20 
years (Bond 1955). 

Males of this cotinga were not known until found in 1966 in an isolated 
Polylepis woodland in the upper Santa Eulalia Valley, the next valley north 
of the Rimac, at more than 4000 m (Luthi 1970). When I visited Yanac in 
1976, the sexes had never been found together, and there was speculation 
that long distance migrations (e.g. across the Rimac Valley) must join them 
for the reproductive period (Luthi 1970). Furthermore, the apparent 
separation of males and females into 2 distinct habitats, with the former 
occurring in higher Polylepis and the latter in Oreopanax, led the Koepckes to 
conclude that if either habitat were destroyed by man the species might 
become extinct. This seemed corroborated by the fact that Zaratornis could 
not be found by them above Yanac where the Oreopanax groves just above 

257 [Bull.B.O.C.i? Si: ioi(i)] 

the village had been greatly reduced by local people. I now believe that this 
interesting bird is more or less resident in one habitat, Polylepis woodland, 
and that post-breeding dispersal accounts for individuals or groups of 
individuals that occur in other (lower) areas, like the forest of Zarate. 

Because of the enigmatic nature of this species, and because of the paucity 
of information of Andean cotingas in general, I became interested in 
Zaratornis and from 1974 to 1978, while working for the Louisiana State 
University Museum of Zoology (LSUMZ), I was able to observe this bird in 
3 localities. Because of the lack of information on Polylepis woodlands, I include 
a list of conspicuous plant genera represented in them, and some of the other 
characteristic bird species found in them. Morphological data from specimens 
of Z. stresemanni in the LSUMZ are presented in Table 1 . 

Table I 
Mensural data from specimens of Zaratornis stresemanni in the LSUMZ. 
sex wing (chord) tail tarsus weight locality 

mm mm mm g 







Santa Eulalia 







Santa Eulalia 





2 5-5 


Santa Eulalia 







Tutapac (Yanac) 













5 2 
















Typical soft part colours are as 

follows: iris 


bill light bluish-grey; 

tarsi and feet dark 


Since the discovery of Zaratornis at Zarate in 1953, this bird has been 
found in 7 localities, 6 on the western slopes of the Western Andes, 
and one on the western flank of the Eastern Andes in the upper Maranon 
River drainage. From north to south the localities and the elevations at which 
Zaratornis was found are as follows : 

Tayabamba (3250 m), Departamento de La Libertad (sight record by LSUMZ personnel, 
M. Robbins, pers. comm.) ; above Yanac (Bond 195 5) and Quebrada Tutapac (3650-4250 m), 
c. 25 km by trail south of Yanac, Dpto. Ancash (pers. obs.) ; Quebrada Llanganuco (c. 3400- 
4300 m), east of Yungay, Dpto. Ancash (sight records by E. Mackrill and J. Rowlett, pers. 
comm.); Quebrada Quicar (c. 3700 m), east of Chancay, Dpto. Lima (sight record by T. 
Mischler, pers. comm.); c. 13 km W. Milloc (3600-4200 m) in the upper Santa Eulalia 
Valley, Dpto. Lima (Luthi 1970, and pers. obs.); and Pampa Galeras (3650 m), c. 50 km 
east of Nazca, Dpto. Ayacucho (Brokaw 1976, and pers. obs.). The known elevational 
range of the species is 2700 to 4240 m. I predict that the bird will eventually be found to 
inhabit the Polylepis zone of western Dpto. La Libertad, and it may in fact range south to 
northern Dpto. Arequipa. 

My observations were made in 3 of the above localities: Quebrada 
Tutapac, the upper Santa Eulalia Valley, and Pampa Galeras. 


The habitat of 'Zaratornis is Polylepis spp. (Rosaceae) woodland surrounded 
by shrubbery and grassland. At the northern end of the distributional range 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 258 

of the species these isolated tracts grow on steep, rocky slopes of deep 
quebradas, often glacial valleys, separated from one another by high puna 
grasslands and rugged snow-covered mountains. Most of the habitat there is 
remote and difficult to reach. In the south Polylepis is more accessible. The 
woodlands at Pampa Galeras occur on moderate slopes that rise above great 
expanses of level grasslands. At Zarate this bird has been found in a relict 
Temperate Zone forest of a variety of tree species (see Ferreyra 1978). 

On the study sites Zaratornis was noted mainly in small groves less than one 
hectare in size, separated from each other by grassy and shrub-dotted areas 
or rockslides. Average tree height on the 3 sites was as follows : Tutapac - 
5 m, Santa Eulalia - 5 m, Pampa Galeras -3.5 m. The largest trees in the first 
2 localities had diameters at breast height (DBH) of up to 80 cm. Other promi- 
nent plant growth noted were woody shrubs of the following Compositae : 
Gynoxjs spp. (very common at Tutapac), Vernonia sp. (at the lower edge of 
the Santa Eulalia woods), Chuquiraga sp. (Santa Eulalia and Pampa Galeras), 
Senecio spp. and Bacchar is spp. (all localities). Lupinus spp. (Leguminosae) were 
also prominent in all localities, and a Berberis sp. (Berberidaceae) was noted 
at the Santa Eulalia site and at Pampa Galeras. All these shrubs grow mainly 
along the edges of the woodlands. The ground below the trees is covered 
with grasses and other herbaceous growth. 

Of greatest importance to the cotinga is the presence in the Polylepis of two 
conspicuous, orange-flowered mistletoes of the Loranthaceae, Tristerix 
chodatianus at Tutapac and Santa Eulalia, and (probably) JLigaria cuneifolia at 
Pampa Galeras. The former was the only fruit-producing plant observed at 
Tutapac, and certainly the most important one found in the upper Santa 
Eulalia Valley. At Pampa Galeras ILigaria was the only observed food source 
for Zaratornis. Koepcke (1958) mentioned Phrygilanthus peruviana (=Tristerix 
secundus) as an important food item for the cotingas Zaratornis and Ampelion 
rubrocristata. Clumps of these 3 mistletoes grow at or near the ends of 
Polylepis branches at all heights in the trees. 

Characteristic bird species that inhabit Polylepis woodlands (and spend 
most of their time in or under the trees) at Tutapac (1), in the upper Santa 
Eulalia Valley (2), and Pampa Galeras (3) include: — 

Aglaeactis cupripennis (1, 2), Metallura phoebe (all) (this and the last hummingbird species 
are important pollinators of the mistletoe flowers), Leptasthenurayanacensis (1), L.pileata (all), 
Cranioleuca antisiensis (1, 2), Grallaria andicola (1, 2), Scytalopus magellanicus (1), Ochthoeca 
oenanthoides (all), O. rufipectoralis (1), O. kucophrys (2, 3), Oreomanes fraseri (all), Xenodacnis 
parina (1, 2), Atlapetes rufigenis (1), A., nationi (2), Carduelis atrata (all), C. uropygialis (2), and 
C. crassirostris(a\\). Conspicuous mammals observed in association with Polylepis at Tutapac 
were White-tailed Deer Odocoileus virginianus, Taruca or Peruvian Huemul Hippocamelus 
antisiensis ; and Mountain Viscacha Lagidium peruanum. 

Climatologically Polylepis woodlands are part of the arid Puna Zone 
environment. Rains fall mainly from January to March, often in the form of 
snow or ice. Tovar (1973) provides the following data for Pampa Galeras: — 
annual rainfall there during 1966-1969 averaged 822 mm, of which 663 mm 
fell during the above 3 -month period; only 13 mm were recorded from May 
to September, while October to December received a range of 23.4 to 
49.3 mm; warmest average daily temperatures were noted during the wet 
months (January to March = 6.3°C), while the coolest period was June to 
August (3°C); average daily highs ranged from io.9°C (March) to i3.6°C 
(September to November); lows were 6.7°C (July) to i.5°C (January); 

2 5 9 [Bull.B.O.C. iygi: 101(1)] 

throughout most of the year days are warm and sunny, and nights are clear 
and cold. Unfortunately, weather data for localities at the northern end of 
the range of Zaratornis are not available. 

Zaratornis - mistletoe interdependence 

One of the most interesting aspects of Zaratornis ecology is its apparent 
mutualism (or perhaps symbiosis) with the mistletoes Tristerix and Ligaria. 
At Tutapac and in the Santa Eulalia Valley this cotinga was seen to feed 
solely on the fruits of Tristerix chodatianus. The elevational and geographic 
distribution (Ancash to lea) of this little-known plant (J. Kuijt, in litt.) 
coincides closely with that of Zaratornis. At Pampa Galeras the cotinga 
appeared to be dependent on another mistletoe, probably Ligaria cuneifolia (see 
Tovar 1973). In all 3 localities, the seeds of these plants were being dispersed, 
through regurgitation, onto Polylepis branches. 

During foraging bouts, the cotinga perched on mistletoe clumps and 
swallowed up to 5 berries in succession. Within a few minutes individuals 
flew to another perch site, either an exposed calling perch or a sheltered limb 
within the foliage of a tree. There, after 5-10 minutes more, the sticky seeds 
were regurgitated, one by one, and wiped onto the surface of the limb. I 
never saw a seed fall to the ground during this process and assume that a very 
high proportion of all fruits taken are successfully dispersed in this manner. 
The exposed dead branches of calling perches were thickly covered with 
regurgitated seeds, and examination of less frequently used perch sites of 
living branches and limbs also revealed seeds, a few in various stages of 
germination. The seeds, quite large for mistletoes (A. Gentry, pers. comm.), 
are apparently always regurgitated. 

Zaratornis was the only frugivorous bird observed on all study sites, and is 
probably the sole dispersal agent for mistletoes growing above 3000 m. It 
appears that both species of mistletoes produce fruit throughout the year, 
though fruit seemed to be less abundant during the dry months August- 
October. This might account for the post-breeding dispersal of part of the 
Zaratornis population and subsequent appearance of the species in wooded 
areas at lower elevations (e.g. Zarate). 

Obligate interdependence of birds and mistletoes has been reported 
previously for the avian genera Euphonia and Dicaeum (Kuijt 1969: 45-46). 
Interestingly, at least some species in these genera have specialized digestive 
tracts for handling large numbers of small mistletoe seeds. The Zaratornis - 
mistletoe interdependence represents a different type of co-adaptive system, 
whereby relatively small numbers of large fruits are taken, and a high pro- 
portion of their seeds are dispersed to a possible germination site. It is 
tempting to speculate on the degree to which this bird and its food plants 
may have co-evolved. Detailed studies of the biology of both these organisms 
are needed before such a process can be understood. 


Almost nothing has been written about the behaviour of Zaratornis or its 
2 close relatives Ampelion rubrocristata and A. ruf axilla. Farrand (in Snow 
1973) wrote: "In its [Zaratornis] general behaviour it is very like Ampelion 
rubrocristata. In a manner very reminiscent of that species it often pops up 
suddenly onto a dead snag and sits upright, looking about rather nervously. 

[BuIl.B.O.C.i98i:ioi(i)\ 260 

The flight o£ Zaratornis is very similar to that of Ampelion and both species 
approach a perch flying low and making a final upward sweep, rather like 
that of a kestrel or shrike." As noted by Koepcke (1958), individuals 
characteristically perch quietly, often for long periods, atop a tree on a 
favourite exposed branch. This is apparently a part of nesting or feeding 
territory surveillance, though Ampelion rubrocristata occasionally hawks 
insects from the air about such perches (pers. obs.). Though I have never 
seen Zaratornis take an insect in any manner, I would expect them to do so 
from time to time. 

At seemingly long but regular intervals, loud songs or calls are uttered 
from the calling perches (see below). When disturbed, a bird perched in the 
open usually bobbed its head and flicked its wings and tail in a nervous 
manner. Birds on territory (see under nesting behaviour) often pursued 
conspecifics that had entered the defended area. Territories of mated pairs 
at Tutapac were small, averaging (very) approximately 100 m x 60 m (n=6). 

Twice I observed a display between members of a mated pair. In both 
instances this occurred after both birds had been foraging. One individual 
(the sexes are monomorphic) flew from a mistletoe clump to a conspicuous 
calling perch where it was soon joined by the second bird. Both faced each 
other, and, while less than a foot apart, bowed towards each other slightly, 
and began head bobbing and wing flicking. After 30-60 seconds, these 
displaying birds regurgitated Tristerix seeds onto the exposed surface of the 
Polylepis branch. During this type of display no sounds were uttered. Similar 
posturing and behaviour were exhibited by members of feeding aggregations 
(4-10 individuals) noted in August and September in the Santa Eulalia 


Like other cotingas, Zaratornis has a rather limited, unmusical repertoire. 
The primary song of the species, which under normal conditions is repeated 
3-6 times at intervals of 30 to 60 seconds, is a loud, low-pitched series that 
may be written as : "reh-reh-reh-reh-rrrrrrrrrrr-re-re." It averages c. 4 seconds 
in length, and falls within a frequency range of 2-4 kHz (see Plate 1). This 
vocalization speeds to a roll towards the middle and ends with 2-3 emphatic 
notes ; it is nasal in quality and sounds rather froglike at a distance. It is given 
by both members of territorial pairs, usually from the tip of an exposed 
calling perch, and also by members of feeding aggregations during the non- 
breeding season. Calling normally begins in the morning (8.00-9.00) when 
sunlight first illuminates a woodland. One calling bird is usually answered by 
several others in adjacent groves. Calling is most frequent during early 
morning and late afternoon. 

A regularly heard disturbance call uttered by incubating birds upon being 
flushed from a nest, and also by adults engaged in intra-specific territorial 
encounters, is a drawn-out "raaaaaaah". Contact notes between members of 
pairs or feeding aggregations are short but similar in quality to other 
vocalizations ("reh" "reh" "reh" etc.). While calling, birds remain upright 
and almost motionless. 

Tape-recordings of this species are on deposit at the Cornell University 
Library of Natural Sounds. 


Prior to 1 976, Zaratornis had not been found breeding. The female specimen 


[BulLB.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 

l l 

1 I 



[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 


1 * WM 

1 > V| 

W^^^ ^^^^m 

% ^ik^M 


' ' .^1 


n f ' 

HMF § 

^K ^ ■ JB 

Hi * 

1^^ ^^^w 

fc f lArl 

ft • #^Jr 

Plate 2A (left). The right tarsal joint and hypotarsus in Whooper 
Swans Cygnus cygnus cygnus (left) and Mute Swans C. olor (right), (a) 
Anterior view of tibiotarsal condyles, (b) Anterior view of tarso- 
metatarsal head, (c) Internal hypotarsal ridge, (d) Posterior view of 
hypotarsus. (e ) Proximal view of tarsometatarsal head, posterior side 
downwards. Threequarters actual size, Photography by M. J. Ashby. 

See Northcote (p. 266). 

Plate 2B (below). Sooty Falcon Falco concolor. Left. Perched in dead, 
tree. Note dark patch in front of eye, large feet and long wings 
Right. In flight. Note long wings and dark primaries. (Taken from 
35 mm colour slides by R. Liversidge.) 

See Liversidge, Richardson and Gubb (p. 268). 


263 [Bull.B.O.C.i 981: ioi{i)] 

collected by Carriker above Yanac in March 1932 was stated to be in "breed- 
ing" condition, but with no further details. Frank P. Frazier, Jr. accompanied 
the Koepckes and Hans Liithi on their 1966 visit to the upper Santa Eulalia 
Valley, when the first male specimens were obtained, and recently made 
available the following notes from that trip (in litt.) : "March 26. . . . Once we 
started getting into the woods I saw a bird in a treetop which I recognized . . . 
as Zaratornis. We didn't see more until a bit later, when we reached a clear 
spot in the woods. We found that there were plenty of Zaratornis in these 
woods (which cover maybe 30 acres, more vertical than otherwise), appearing 
to be in pairs. Dr. [Maria] Koepcke found what she thought was an old nest, 
and saw birds carrying bits of the loose bark of the trees, presumably nesting 
material. We collected 3 specimens, one of which seemed a bit clearer in 
plumage and perhaps is a male (hitherto unknown). She said Zaratornis went 
in groups or individually in Zarate, but [she] never [found] any sign of 
breeding there. Apparently it does here . . . she was most pleased at her 
findings here about 'her' bird." The above specimens were indeed males, and 
the above locality has since been proved to be a breeding area. 

Between 23 and 31 May 1976, I found 4 nests in active use in Quebrada 
Tutapac. A fifth was found in the upper Santa Eulalia Valley on 6 May 1978. 
All were discovered by locating presumably mated pairs in small, isolated 
tree groves away from the larger wooded areas that occur in ravines or along 
the bases of cliffs. In both localities these groves were on the south slopes of 
the quebrada, and received up to 3 more hours of sunlight daily than the 
north slopes. Considering the very low (freezing) night and early morning 
temperatures of this environment, the added hours of warmth may influence 
nest site selection. Though mistletoe was present in trees on the north slopes, 
few cotingas were seen there, and no nests were found despite diligent 

All nests were well hidden within large clumps (0.5-1 m dia.) of Tristerix 
near the ends of tree branches from 4-7 m above ground, and within 1-3 m 
of a trunk. All were fully shaded by surrounding mistletoe branches and 
foliage ofPo/j/epis. 

The fifth nest, which resembled the others very closely in overall size and 
construction (Plate 1) was collected (LSUMZ-MDW#23i2). It was a well- 
made, rather deep cup of mosses and greenish-grey lichens, the latter being 
especially concentrated around the perimeter of the cup, which was lined 
with coarse green and yellow grasses; a few small (1 5-70 mm) twigs had also 
been incorporated into that structure. This nest had an outside diameter of 
140 x 160 mm, an outside depth of 83 mm, an inside diameter of 76 X 80 mm, 
and an outside depth of 42 mm. It contained 3 eggs measuring 32.4 x 21.6, 
32.6 x 22.1 and 33.3 x 21.6 mm. These were Greenish Glaucous of Ridgway 
(19 1 2), with a distinct wreath of brownish and greyish-brown flecks about 
the larger end, and a few additional flecks of the same colours scattered over 
the entire egg. 

Two of the 4 Tutapac nests contained 2 young and one egg, a third held 
2 eggs and one nestling, and a fourth, which definitely contained at least one 
young bird, could not be reached for closer examination. One of the above 
eggs was collected but broken before measurements could be taken (LSUMZ, 
not catalogued). The nestlings of the 3 examined nests were well-feathered 
for their small size, and resembled adults in colouration. All were very quiet 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 9 Si: ioi(i)] 264 

in the nest and held their eyes closed even as I lifted them out for closer 

Only 2 adults, presumably a male and a female, were observed in the 
immediate vicinity of each nest site. At nests with eggs, one bird appeared to 
be doing most, if not all, of the incubation. Incubating adults could almost 
be touched before flushing to a nearby limb. The second adult of a pair 
usually appeared only after the first had flushed and uttered alarm calls, or 
when taped songs were played within the nesting area. 

Both adults fed nestlings regurgitated fruit; generally only one adult 
visited the nest at a time. Of each pair, one adult, presumably the male, was 
definitely more aggressive and vocal in response to playbacks of songs. Due 
to work obligations I was unable to obtain detailed information on incubation 
or feeding rates. conservation 

Despite its rather restricted geographical and elevational distribution, 
Zaratornis Stresemanni does not appear to be a threatened species. In all 3 of my 
study areas it was a relatively common bird, and similar suitable habitat surely 
occurs in many (often inaccessible) quebradas throughout its range. That this 
unique cotinga is a bird of such restricted habitat does, however, mean that 
its survival is assured only as long as suitable tracts of its habitat are preserved. 
A study of the population dynamics of this and other avian species that 
inhabitat Polykpis woodlands is badly needed ; such studies will enable us at 
least to make educated guesses concerning what is "suitable" in terms of 

As mentioned by Ferreyra (1977), Polykpis woodlands of the Peruvian 
Andes have probably been greatly reduced in size over the last several 
thousand years. The scarcity of wood at these elevations in the dry Western 
Andes has pressured man into cutting Polykpis, or quenua as the local people 
know it, for building purposes, especially roof beams, fence rails and firewood, 
but at present large tracts of this forest type exist, mainly on steep slopes far 
from villages. Although cutting, especially for firewood, should be expected 
to continue, I was told in Yanac that the introduction of eucalyptus there in 
the 1920's and 1930's lessened the need for Polykpis wood. While in that 
region, I noticed surprisingly little habitat disturbance, aside from over- 
grazing from livestock, in the Polykpis zone directly above the village 
(3500 m). Farther away, in my Tutapac study area, no evidence of man could 
be found. 

Fortunately Zaratornis seems to prefer small, open groves of trees on steep 
quebrada slopes. It may never have been numerous in the larger tracts of 
forest that probably once grew in shaded valleys and on more moderate 
slopes. Today large areas of suitable habitat remain, protected by law, in the 
Cordillera Blanca south of Yanac. Most of this mountain range is included in 
the recently created Parque Nacional de la Cordillera Blanca. Additionally, 
most of the Polykpis habitat at Pampa Galeras in Ayacucho is within the 
boundaries of the Reserva Nacional de Pampa Galeras. These 2 refuges 
provide protection for a great diversity of Andean vertebrates and plants. 
Above Lima, suitable Polykpis habitat is under little human pressure at the 
present time, but this may change in the future. The establishment of a 
Polykpis reserve in the Department of Lima is highly recommended. This 
would greatly facilitate badly needed studies of the flora and fauna of this 
distinct environment. 

265 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 


I agree with Snow's (1973) decision that Zaratornis and Ampelion are closely- 
related. Similarities can be seen in behaviour (e.g. head bobbing, wing and 
tail flicking displays in Zaratornis are similar to those of Ampelion), vocaliza- 
tions (Ampelion's long calls or "song" and call notes are quite like those of 
Zaratornis in quality and pitch) and nest construction (see Vuilleumier 1969 
for A. rubrocristatd). Doiiornis sc later i, a third member of this group, is 
morphologically quite like Ampelion (and Zaratornis), but is divergent 
vocally; it should also be considered congeneric with Ampelion. Another 
cotingid-like group that resembles Ampelion is the Phytotomidae. Behaviour- 
ally and vocally plant-cutters are quite similar to Zaratornis and Ampelion 
(pers. obs.). Ames (1971) found similarities in syringeal morphology between 
Phytotoma and He Hoc her a (= Ampelion). 

Acknowledgements: I am grateful to G. R. Graves, J. P. O'Neill, J. V. Remsen, T. S. 
Schulenberg, and D. Snow who read the manuscript and offered helpful suggestions for its 
improvement. I thank F. Frazier, E. Mackrill, T. Mischler, M. Robbins, and J. Rowlett for 
allowing me to use their unpublished observations. M. D. Williams helped with the nest 
description, and he also preserved the eggs and nest and supplied the photo of them. 
A. Gentry and R. Ferreyra kindly aided with plant identifications, and J. Kuijt provided 
information concerning current mistletoe taxonomy. J. Gulledge and R. Beck prepared the 
sonograph. Two additional friends deserve special mention; Manuel Plenge provided 
constant support for this study, and transportation to Polylepis woodlands above Lima, and 
Reyes Rivera aided greatly with the field work at Tutapac. Arturo and Helen Koenig made 
my stays in Lima enjoyable. 

Thanks are also due to Antonio Brack E., Marc Dourojeanni R., Susana Moller H. and 
Carlos Ponce P. of the Direccion General Forestal y de Fauna of the Ministerio de Agri- 
cultura, Lima, Peru, who supported this work and provided the necessary permits for it. 

Financial support was generously provided by J. S. Mcllhenny and the LSUMZ. 

References : 

Ames, P. 1971. The morphology of the syrinx in passerine birds. Bull. Peabody Mus. Nat. 

Hist. 37: 1-194. 
Bond, J. 1955. Additional notes on Peruvian birds II. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Phila. 108: 

Brokaw, H. P. 1976. Birds of Pampa Galeras, Peru. Delmarva Ornithol. 1 1 : 26-30. 
Ferreyra, R. 1976. Endangered Species and Plant Communities in Andean and Coastal Peru. 

Symposium, New YorkBot. Gard., N.Y., U.S.A. 

— 1978. Flora y vegetacion del monte de Zarate. Bol. Colonia Sui\a en el Peru. Setiembre 

Koepcke, M. 1954. Zaratornis stresemanni nov. gen. nov. spec, un cotingido nuevo del Peru. 
Publ. Mus. Hist. Nat. "Javier Prado", Ser. A. (Zoologia) 16 : 1-8. 

— 1958. Die Vogel des Waldes von Zzrate. Bonn. Zool.Beitr. 9: 167-168. 
Kuijt, J. 1969. TheBiology of Parasitic Flowering Plants. Univ. of Cal. Press: Berkeley. 

Luthi, H. 1970. Blick in die Natur: der geheimnisvelle Zaratornis. Bol. Colonia Sui^a en el 

Peru 5 : 15-17. 
Ridgway, R. 191 2. Color Standards and Nomenclature. Washington, D.C., published by the 

Snow, D. 1973. The classification of the Cotingidae (Aves). Breviora 409 : 1-27. 
Tovar, O. 1973. Comunidades vegetales de la reserva nacional de vicunas de Pampa 

Galeras, Ayacucho, Peru. Publ. Mus. Hist. Nat. "Javier Prado", Ser. B (Botania) 27 : 1-32. 
Vuilleumier, F. 1969. Field notes on some birds from the Bolivian Andes. Ibis 1 1 1 : 599-608. 

Address: Theodore A. Parker, III, Museum of Zoology, Louisiana State University, Baton 
Rouge, La 70893, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 


Differences in weight and habit of Whooper Cygnus 

cygnus cygnus and Mute C. olor Swans in relation to 

differences in their long bones 

by E. Marjorie Northcote 

Received 3 July 1980 

Whooper Swans Cygnus cygnus cygnus are smaller and more terrestrial in their 
habits than Mute Swans C. olor, and, in addition, the former are migratory 
whereas the latter fly only short distances (Cramp & Simmons 1977). 
Differences in the long bones may be related to these differences in weight 
and habit. 

Whooper Swans have longer legs than Mute Swans (Table 1), (comparing 
femur and tarsometatarsus lengths P<o.oo5) but their toes are shorter in 

Table i 

Ranges in length and width, with means and standard deviations (all in mm), of long 
bones of Whooper Swans Cygnus cygnus cygnus and Mute Swans C. olor. 

Whooper Swan Mute Swan 

Range (n) 





9.4-1 1.6 








Mean±s.d. Range (n) 

\/ 28) 275.5i12.18 270-311 \, 
J^ 28; 12.30io.96 10.8-13.7 J^ 33 



259.7in.14 237-280 -\ { 

10.16io.49 8.8-10.7 J K 

108.78i5.96 95-5-H3-I \ /,, 

10.46io.82 9.2-11.5 f v:> ^ 

}w) ^ 

87±9-97 183-210 \ 


Length 110.2-129.3 \ , * 118.18i5.99 98.6-118.6 \ , 

Width 7.7-8.8 j {zo) 8.2 4 ±o.37 7.4-9.0 J K * 

Note. Definitions of measurements are given elsewhere (Northcote 1979, 1980). 


29o.9± 14.05 


io.2o±o. 68 



relation to the tarsometatarsus (for example, middle toe : tarsometatarsus for 
a Whooper Swan specimen was 128 mm:i 18 mm; for a Mute Swan specimen 
it was 139 mm :ioo. mm), both of which factors would conduce to more 
elegant movements on land. In addition, there are morphological differences 
in the form of the tarsal joint and the tarsometatarsus. The precalcaneal knob 
on the head of the tarsometatarsus moves in the intercondylar fossa of the 
tibiotarsus. Compared to Mute Swans, Whooper Swans have a more 
attenuated knob (Plate 1, b) and a narrower intercondylar fossa (the internal 
condyle is wider) (Plate 1, a); lateral movement of the tarsus is therefore more 
restricted and walking is more efficient. Flexor tendons of the toes run 
behind the tarsal joint and are held in place by ridges and grooves on the 
posteriorly projecting hypotarsus at the proximal end of the tarsometatarsus. 
Compared to those of Mute Swans, all 3 grooves in Whooper Swans are more 
nearly parallel to one another and to the long axis of the bone (Plate 1, d), so 

267 [BulLB.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 

that the flexor tendons pull the toes in a direction more nearly parallel to the 
midline of the body and this again facilitates walking. Larger cranio-caudal 
depth of the middle trochlea of the Whooper Swan's tarsometatarsus 
(Whooper, 16.85 mmio.845, n=i3; Mute, 15.40 mmio.526, n=i2; 
P= 0.000 5) allows the corresponding toe to move in the greater arc that is 
required for taking a longer stride, while greater width across the trochleae 
(Whooper, 28.16 mmii.417, n=i2; Mute, 24.16 mmii.987, n = 9; 
P <o.ooo5) may provide more stability when the bird is standing on one foot 
whilst taking the stride. In Mute Swans the internal hypotarsal ridge extends 
posteriorly more than it does in Whooper Swans (Plate 1, c, e). Such modi- 
fication may be correlated with the presence of relatively larger swimming 
muscles (Owre 1967). 

The humerus in Whooper Swans is shorter than that in Mute Swans 
(Table 1) (P<o.ooo5) and is also stouter (for the mean ratio of width to 
length P<o.ooo5). The humerus being the only pneumatised limb bone in 
swans (Shufeldt 1909), greater stoutness may therefore be related to greater 
pneumaticity in Whooper Swans. (The volume of the pneumatic space in a 
297 mm long Whooper humerus was 54 cc, that in a 304 mm long Mute Swan 
humerus was 44 cc.) The stouter humerus in Whooper Swans is able to 
withstand greater bending stresses and in conjunction with their greater wing 
length (Scott et al. 1972., Cramp & Simmons 1977) it may be an adaptation to 
migration at high altitudes. 

These differences, besides showing a relation between form and function, 
may be useful taxonomically. The morphological characters may also be of 
help for determining the affinities of an extinct species. 

Acknowledgements: For allowing me access to specimens in their care I am grateful to 
curators at the University Museums of Zoology at Cambridge and Aberdeen and the 
Colchester & Essex, Royal Scottish, Glasgow and British (Natural History) Museums. I 
appreciate the travel expenses given to me by the University of Cambridge. Corpses for 
preparation of skeletons were kindly supplied by the Wildfowl Trust and the R.S.P.C.A. 
This research was carried out during the tenure of a Calouste Gulbenkian Research Student- 
ship and Fellowship. 

References : 

Cramp, S. & Simmons, K. E. L. (eds.) 1977. The Birds of the Western Palearctic. Vol. 1 
Oxford: University Press. 

Northcote, E. M. 1979. Determination of age and sex of long bones of Mute Swan Cygnus 
olor. Ibis 121: 74-80. 

— 1980. Sexual dimorphism of the long bones of Whooper Swans Cygnus cygnus cygnus. Ibis 
122: 369-372. 

Owre, O. T. 1967. Adaptations for locomotion and feeding in the Anhinga and the Double- 
crested Cormorant. Orn. Mon. 6 : 1-1 38. 

Scott, P. & The Wildfowl Trust, Slimbridge (eds.). 1972. The Swans. London: Michael 

Shufeldt, R. W. 1909. Osteology of Birds. New York State Museum Bulletin 1 3 : 1-38. 

Address: Dr. E. Marjorie Northcote, Dept. of Zoology, Downing Street, Cambridge 
CB2 3EJ. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 198 1 . 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 268 

The Sooty Falcon Falco concolor in the southern Kalahari 

by R. Lwerszdge, P. Richardson and A. Gubb 

Received j July 1980 

The Sooty Falcon Falco concolor is a species which breeds in North Africa 
(Dowsett in Snow 1978), but while it is known to winter in the southern 
Ethiopian Region, knowledge of its exact movements is severely limited. The 
main wintering area is the dry savannah of Madagascar (Brown & Amad on 
1968), but there are also regular records for coastal regions in eastern (Penry 
1979a) and southeastern Africa (Clancey 1969). There are very few records of 
this species being observed inland in southeastern Africa, the southernmost 
being in Zambia (Penry 1979a). Thus the present observation, which was 
made on 1 March 1979 and was approximately 42 km south of Unions End 
(the point where the international boundaries of South Africa, Botswana and 
Namibia meet), represents the southernmost inland record in Africa for 
F. concolor. 

During a routine raptor census drive through the dunes in the Kalahari 
Gemsbok National Park we flushed a falcon that had evidently been resting 
in the canopy of a large thorn tree. Even in flight the bird was immediately 
suspected to be a new species to the area. It flew with a strong heavy flight 
which was almost Hobby F. subbuteo-like, but the wings appeared relatively 
longer (See Plates) and more powerful (perhaps a slower stroke) and the back 
appeared more rounded (hunch-backed). Fortunately the bird settled within 
200 m in a dead tree, where we were able to observe it in detail from about 
5 o m at 1 60 x magnification. The bird was uniformly mid-grey in colour. The 
wings when folded, extended just beyond the tail (See Plates). The cere and 
preorbital skin were bright yellow and separated by a distinct black area 
which formed a definite vertical patch, as opposed to only the lores being 
black as in other species. No longitudinal markings were seen on the chest. 
The feet were orange-yellow. Here we would like to draw attention to 
another field character which is not mentioned elsewhere but is evident in 
the photograph - namely that the bird has larger feet than other similar 
falcons. The long toes are possibly an adaptation to feeding on bats in flight, 
a habit which has now been recorded for concolor in South Africa (Young, 
Nicholls, Mendelsohn 1979). 

It is evident that concolor differs widely in its habits, habitat and feeding 
behaviour while in its summer and winter ranges. Variously described as 
crepuscular, almost crepuscular and feeding throughout the day (Clapham 
1964), its habits probably change according to the availability of prey. The 
prey ranges from bats and migratory birds, to lizards, termites (Penry 1979a) 
and insects. All prey is recorded as being taken on the wing. The habitats 
described vary from totally barren Sahara desert (Booth 1961), peri-urban 
areas, coastal areas and associations with large tracts of water (Penry 1979b) 
to savannah or scrub-savannah in Madagascar (Brown & Amadon 1968). 
The present observation of concolor was made soon after we had driven 
through undulating grassland and had entered a strip of Acacia erioloba 
savannah. In this context, savannah refers to trees being 6-10 m in height 
and about 40-100 m apart (open to sparse woodland savannah). 

The inland movements of concolor to and from its wintering areas have 

269 [Bull.B.O.C. ipSi: 101(1)] 

been subject to speculation (Penry 1979b). They are difficult to determine 
because of the paucity of recorded observations. In Zambia, Penry has 
recorded 2 movements: October/November and March/ April. In South 
Africa we now have what appear to be regular records from late December 
(Clancey 1969) to 10 April along the eastern coastline, from Ndumu on the 
Natal coast in the north to Dwesa on the Transkei coast in the south (Brooke 

The presence of this species in the southern Kalahari on 1 March provides 
the sort of single record that further confuses an already unclear picture. If it 
was a lone vagrant, does it represent the southernmost bird of an inland 
movement through Zambia? The senior author has been conducting 
quarterly censuses of raptors in the area for 6 years without any previous 
record, so it seems reasonable to say that the bird is at least uncommon. It 
was recorded at a time when termite eruptions occur and several migratory 
raptors often congregate for this food source. The habitat would appear to 
be similar to that of its main wintering area in the dry Madagascar savannah. 
Penry (1979b) has observed concolor at Chama in southern Zambia. Further 
south in Botswana there are the Okavango swamps, and from them through 
to the Kalahari Gemsbok Park there lies a vast region of virtually unin- 
habited savannah which could well act as a migration route for concolor. In this 
regard, it is interesting to note in comparison that except for a single sight 
record, Smithers (1964) does not record the Hobby Fa/co s. subbuteo as a bird 
species of Botswana. In contrast, in the adjacent Kalahari Gemsbok National 
Park the senior author has recorded as many as 8 at one termite erruption, as 
well as a great number of other single records. One can therefore conclude 
that we have little knowledge of whether subbuteo occurs in the dry savannah 
of Botswana and, similarly, whether concolor may not also have been over- 
looked in this region. 

One wonders how concolor came to be overlooked in Natal until Clancey 
saw the first bird in i960. If it had always been present, we doubt that the 
competent ornithologists of yesteryear could all have missed this species - 
particularly when one considers that they were quick to shoot any unknown 
birds. Thus we believe that there has been a change in the status of concolor 
in southern Africa. 

References : 

Bennett, G. 1979. Sooty Falcons in Durban. Albatross 253:9. 

Booth, B. D. 1961. Breeding of the Sooty Falcon in the Libyan Desert. Ibis 103a: 129-130. 

Brooke, R. 1978. Sooty Falcon in Transkei. TbeBee-eater 29 : 1. 

Brown, L. E. & Amadon, D. 1968. Eagles, Hawks and Falcons of the World. London: Country 
Life Books. 

Clancey, P. A. 1969. The Sooty Falcon as a South African Bird. Bokmakierie 21(3) : 50-5 1. 

Clapham, C. S. 1964. The Birds of the Dahlac Archipelago. Ibis 106 : 376-388. 

Harris, 1979. Quoted in "Recent Field Notes" in Albatross 25 5 : 10. 

Penry, E. H. 1979a. Sight records of the Sooty Falcon Falco concolor in Zambia. Bull. Brit 
Orn.Cl. 99: 63-65. 

Penry, E. H. 1979b. The Sooty Falcon Falco concolor in Zambia 1977-1979.^//. Zam. Orn. 

Soc. 11 : 14-19. 
Smithers, R. H. N. 1964. A Checklist of the Birds of Bechuanaland Protectorate. Trustees Nat. 

Museum, S. Rhodesia. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(1)] 


Snow, D. W. (Ed.). 1978. An Atlas of Speciation in African Non-passerine Birds. London: 
Brit. Mus. (Nat. Hist.). 

Young, Nicholls, Mendelsohn, 1979. Quoted in "Recent Field Notes" in Albatross 254: 10. 

Address: Dr. Richard Liversidge, P. Richardson and A. Gubb, McGregor Museum, Box 
316, Kimberley 8300, South Africa. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Brightly coloured plumage in female manakins (Pipra) 

by Gary R. Graves 

Received 9 fune 1980 

Female manakins {Pipra) are feathered primarily in drab olives and greys and 
lack the contrasting bright, often glossy crown patches found in males. 
However, adult females with spots of brightly coloured "male-like" plumage 
have been previously reported in 5 of 16 recognized species of Pipra 
{erythrocephala, Snow 1962, Wetmore 1972; mentalis, Wetmore 1972; pipra, 
Zimmer 1936, Haverschmidt 1971; aureola, Haver schmidt i<)6y, filicauda, 
Schwartz & Snow 1978). 

The purpose of this note is to add 5 additional species to the list of female 
Pipra that occasionally exhibit brightly coloured feathers, and to call attention 
to the possible genera- wide occurrence of such characters. 

A pooled sample of 162 adult female Pipra (11 species) with complete 
gonad and skull ossification data from Louisiana State University Museum of 
Zoology was carefully examined for brightly coloured feathers on the crown, 

Table i 
Numbers (percentages) of female manakins {Pipra) in plumage categories (see text). 


Crown colour 


in males 


















I3(5 ) 




























Light Blue 






























*= Females with brightly coloured feathers reported for first time. 

nape and auricular region (Table 1). These feathers, often seen only after 
careful scrutiny, are similar in colour and glossiness to those found on 
respective males. Specimens were classified in 4 categories: (1) those with 

271 [Bull.B.O.C.ipSi: ioi(i)] 

no brightly coloured feathers ; (2) feather(s) visible only after close examina- 
tion; (3) feathers easily observed at arm's length; and (4) coloured feathers 
highly visible even under field conditions. Specimens in categories 3 and 4 
resemble immature males with incoming crown feathers. 

"Male-like" plumage is also known in females oiChiroxiphia, Manacus and 
Chloropipo unicolor (Wetmore 1972 and pers. obs.). The above data suggest 
that a larger sample will reveal that all Pipra species have some females with 
brightly coloured feathers, a small percentage of which may resemble 
immature males. 

Preliminary information from museum specimen tags also suggests that 
sex determination on the basis of iris colouration in female or immature 
plumaged manakins is not reliable. 

Although the adaptive significance, if any, of a single brightly coloured 
feather is unknown, females that resemble immature males may have a 
confounding effect in complex manakin social systems, even at low fre- 
quencies of occurrence. Clearly then, controls in lek behaviour study should 
routinely include laparotomy to sex individuals in female or immature 

I thank J. V. Remsen, J. P. O'Neill and S. Y. Graves for comments on an 
earlier draft. 

References : 

Haverschmidt, F. 1965. Variations in plumage of male and female Pipra aureola. Auk 82: 

— 1971- Variations in plumage of male and female White-crowned Manakins Pipra 
pipra. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 91 : 18. 

Schwartz, P. & Snow, D. 1978. Display and related behavior of the Wire-tailed Manakin. 
LivingBird 17:51-78. 

Snow, D. 1962. A field study of the Golden-headed Manakin {Pipra erythrocephald) in 
Trinidad, W. I. Zoologica 47 : 183-198. 

Wetmore, A. 1972. Birds of the Republic of Panama. Pt. 3. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian 
Institution Press. 

Zimmer, J. 1936. Notes on the Pipridae. Amer. Mus. Novitates 889 : 29 pp. 

Address: Gary R. Graves, Museum of Zoology, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, 
LA 70893, U.S.A. Present address: Department of Biological Science, Florida State Uni- 
versity, Tollatassee, Florida 32306, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 

We would like to point out that the note which appeared in Bull. Brit. 
Orn. CI. (1980) 100(3): 205 relating to the first Puffinus tenuirostris records 
from the Malay Peninsula had previously been recorded and published by 
C. B. Frith(Emu 1978(2) : 95-97 — 'Short-tailed Shearwater, Puffinus tenuirostris 
in the Andaman Sea area, Indian Ocean'). We wish to apologise to Mr. Frith 
for the misunderstandings which led to this regrettable oversight. 

P. R. Colston 

J. F. Monk 

[Bull.B.O.C. ip Si. -ioj(i)] 272 


Howard, R. & Moore, A. 1980. A. Complete Checklist of the Birds of the World. Pp. 1-701 
Oxford University Press. £17.50. 

This is essentially a comprehensive list of birds of the world, culled from many sources 
and presented in a useful way by two amateurs. Mayr's sequence of families is used and each 
species is listed under its generic name (Anglicised names in parenthesis), the sequence 
bearing "most reference to Peters' Checklist, but where that list has been updated and 
revised, then the more recent version has been used" (evidently in a purely arbitrary way). 
Subspecies are treated similarly and are arranged geographically usually from NW to SE, 
and usefully, the country or countries where found are cited for each. An absence of running 
heads to indicate the main family included on each page in a book of 700 pages makes use of 
the index of scientific names constantly and tiresomely necessary. 

A scan through the nomenclature and sequence reveals a greater degree of accuracy than 
is shown regrettably by the references. For example, of 3 main works extensively consulted, 
the titles of two, Peters' Checklist of Birds of the World and Vaurie's The Birds of the Palearctic 
Fauna, are misquoted throughout, and in the authors of the Reference List of the Birds of the 
World Morony's name is invariably incorrectly spelt. This carelessness does not generate 
any confidence in the accuracy of the rest of the references at least. 

Production is up to the usual high standard of O.U.P. but the editing and layout leave 
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Salim Ali. 1979. Indian Hill Birds. Pp. i-lvi + 1-188. 64 plates in colour painted by G. M 
Henry and 8 plates of black-and-white photographs. End paper maps. Oxford University 
Press, Delhi. £11.95. (Received Sep. 1980.) 

A reprint, with a short new preface, of the first (and only) edition of 1949. Some 300 
Himalayan and other hill species are covered, 117 of them pictured in (rather garishly 
reproduced) colour. There are useful distribution tables and field identification charts as well 
as the excellent text, grown less out of date than might be expected in the past 30 years. (The 
review copy had pages 173-188 and a second end paper bound in mistakenly at the end of 
the book.) 

Parmelee, D. F. 1980. Bird Island in Antarctic Waters. Pp. xi + 1-140. Profusely illustrated. 
University of Minnesota Press. $18.95. 

"A birding experience" while on field study in this 10 sq. km of rocky tussock-covered 
outcrop at the western tip of South Georgia crowded with penguins, seabirds and fur 
seals. The informative text — though lightly written, its biological content is evidently 
sound and well-informed — is well illustrated by the author's excellent photographs (5 in 
colour) and some attractive and unusual paintings (12 in colour, some of which colour's 
realism is difficult to believe, at least in the review copy). Attractively produced. 

Riley, T. 1981. The Year of the Golden Eagle. Pp. 1-32. Coloured illustrations. Dent: 

London. £3.95. 
Riley, T. 1981. Tfo Year of the Barn Oivl. Pp. 1-32. Coloured Illustrations. Dent: London. 


Two of a series of picture books for intelligent children. The lives of the two birds are 
simply described during the year's changes, with accurate natural history details, by John 
Andrews of the Royal Soeiety for the Protection of Birds, nicely illustrated by Terry Riley 
to include besides much of the prey and wildlife in the two species' habitats, the Golden 
Eagle in western North America, the Barn Owl in southern France. The end sections 
are in the form of a field guide to each of the animals, birds, insects and flora mentioned 
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Correspondence about Club meetings and other matters not mentioned 
above should go to the Hon. Secretary, R. E. F. Peal, 2 Chestnut Lane, 
Sevenoaks, Kent TN 13 3AR. 

Published by the BRITISH ORNITHOLOGISTS' CLUB and printed by 
The Caxton and Holmesdale Press, 104 London Road Sevenoaks Kent. 

1 1 

ISSN 0007-1595 

Bulletin of the 

British Ornithologists' Club 

N *r. hi 

Edited by 
Dr. J. F. MONK 

Volume 101 No. 2 

June 1981 


Tuesday, 7 July 1981 in the Senior Common Room, South Side, Imperial 
College, Prince's Gardens, S.W.7 at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m. Mr J. H. Elgood, 
author of the forthcoming B.O.U. Check-list on birds of Nigeria, will speak 
on The Birds of Nigeria. Those wishing to attend should send their acceptance 
with a cheque for £4.95 a person to the Hon. Secretary at 2 Chestnut Lane, 
Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR (telephone Sevenoaks 0732 50313) to arrive 
not later than first post on Thursday, 2 July 198 1. 

Tuesday, 15 September 1981 at the same venue at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m. 
Mr C. J. Mead will speak on Autumn Birds in Texas. Those wishing to attend 
should send their acceptance with a cheque for £4.95 a person to the Hon. 
Secretary (address above) to arrive not later than first post on Thursday, 
10 September 1981. 

Tuesday, 17 November 1981 at the same venue and time, Mr P. J. 
Hayman on Sea Birds. 

Tuesday, 12 January 1982 Dr T. J. Seller on Are Bullfinches and Fruit 
Crops really incompatible? 

Tuesday, 2 March 1982 Professor Gordon H. Orians on Mates and Real 
Estate in Blackbird Social Systems. 

Gifts or offers for sale of unwanted back numbers of the 
Bulletin are very welcome 

The Club has no reference copies of Vol. 48 and many 
earlier issues; these would be very specially appreciated 


D. R. Calder (Chairman) B. Gray ( Vice-Chairman) 

R. E. F. Peal {Hon. Secretary) Mrs. D. M. Bradley {Hon. Treasurer) 

Dr. J. F. Monk {Editor) R. D. Chancellor 

J. G. Parker Revd. G. K. McCulloch, O.B.E. 

R A. N. Croucher 

British Ornithologists' Club 1981 

273 [BulI.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(2)] 

Bulletin of the 


Vol. 1 01 No. 2 Y<r n Published : 1 9 June 1 981 


The Annual General Meeting of the British Ornithologists' Club was held at Imperial 
College, London, S.W.7, on Tuesday, 19 May 198 1 at 6 p.m. with Mr. D. R. Calder in the 
Chair. Eight Members were present. 

The Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on 13 May 1980 {Bull. Brit. Orn. CI 
100 : 135) were approved and signed by the Chairman. 

The Report of the Committee and Accounts for 1980 were presented. The Hon. Treasurer 
stated that expenditure incurred by reason of the extra size of the special centenary number 
(Vol. 100 No. 1) and met out of current income was over £600, this being additional to the 
part of the extra costs of that number covered by donations kindly made to the Club. In 
view of this non-recurring item, the excess of income over expenditure of £242 was 
gratifying. Mr. R. A. N. Croucher proposed and Mr. B. Gray seconded that the Report of 
the Committee and Accounts for 1980 be received and adopted and this was carried 

There being no nominations additional to those of th e Committee, the following were 
declared duly elected : — 

Hon. Treasurer: Mrs. D. M. Bradley (re-elected). 

Hon. Secretary: Mr. R. E. F. Peal (re-elected). 

Committee: the Reverend G. K. McCulloch, O.B.E. {vice Mr. C. F. Mann, who retired by 

The Meeting closed with a vote of thanks to the Chairman at 6. 30 p.m. 

The seven hundred and thirty-third Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday 3 March 1981 at 7 p.m. 
The attendance was 27 Members and 16 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER {Chairman), F. B. S. ANTRAM, Mrs DIANA 
Revd. G. K. McCULLOCH, C. F. MANN, Dr J. A. K. MELDRUM, Dr J. F. MONK, 

Guests present were: Mrs A. M. ARCHER, Miss M. BARRY, D. BRADLEY, Dr J. D. 

The speaker was Dr M. de L. Brooke, who gave an illustrated address of great interest 
on aspects of the breeding of Manx Shearwaters Puffinus puffinus on Skokholm and Skomer. 
He dealt especially upon the factors governing the timing of the onset of breeding and a 
stimulating discussion followed. 

The seven hundred and thirty-fourth Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday 19 May 1981 at 7 p.m. 
The attendance was 25 Members and 14 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER {Chairman), Major N. A. G. H. BEAL, R. M., 
K. F. BETTON, Dr. G. BEVEN, Mrs. D. M. BRADLEY, Dr. R. A. CHEKE, Dr. T. J. 

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275 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 


Guests present were: E. J. BACK, Mrs. J. D. BACK, Miss M. BARRY, Mrs. G. BEVEN, 
Mrs. I. McCULLOCH, Mrs. C. F. MANN, Mrs. P. J. OLIVER, Miss M. SAUNDERS, 
and Mrs. B. J. WOODCOCK. 

Mr. C. F. Mann gave an address on "Forest Birds in Kenya", illustrated with colour 
slides of many of the bird species inhabiting Kenya forests, which was much appreciated. 

The forest avifaunae of Kenya were considered in four sections; West, Central, Coast 
and Isolates. Comparisons were made between these areas and some attempt was made to 
show the affinities between them. The effect of altitude on distribution was also discussed. 
Speculation was made on the origins of the forest avifaunae, contrasting the late R. E. 
Moreau's 'pluvial theory' with more recent pollen analysis studies, which suggest that the 
forested areas of tropical Africa may never have been much greater in the past than they 
are today. Resistance to arthropod-borne diseases was suggested as a possible factor in 
altitudinal distribution. 

Last record of the Cebu Island subspecies 

of the Orange-bellied Flowerpecker 

Dicaeum trigonostigma pallidius 

by Dorothy M. Richardson and Allan J. Baker 

Received 2 June ipSo 

The Cebu Island subspecies of the Orange-breasted Flowerpecker, Dicaeum 
trigonostigma pallidius ; is now believed to be extinct. Salomonsen (1967) lists 
as the last record of this taxon a specimen collected on Cebu Island in 1906. 
According to Rabor (1959) this specimen was collected by R. C. McGregor. 
However, the Royal Ontario Museum collection contains a skin collected by 
J. J. Mounsey (JJM 5 14) at Camp Ialiti, Cebu Island, on 26 July 19 10 (data 
from original field collector's label). 

The Royal Ontario Museum specimen (ROM 5 61 54) is greyish-blue above, 
and although the mantle feathers are not well preserved, two have bright 
orange distal ends, characteristic of D. trigonostigma (Sharpe 1885). The 
underparts are almost uniform pale yellow except for a brighter yellow 
suffusion on the upper breast feathers. These features distinguish the 
specimen from D. t. dorsale, which is endemic to the neighbouring islands of 
Masbate, Panay and Negros. The latter is much darker blue above and 
brighter yellow below (Delacour & Mayr 1946, du Pont 1971) and the 
breast is bright orange (Bourns & Worcester 1894). Immature males of D. t. 
dorsale have streaks of orange on the breast (Bourns & Worcester 1894), 
ruling out the possibility that Mounsey 's specimen was a vagrant from 
neighbouring islands. 

There is evidence that Mounsey was indeed collecting on Cebu in 1909-10, 
although Rabor (1959) claims that no serious collecting was done there 
between 1906 and 1947. The skin discussed above was originally part of 
J. H. Fleming's collection (JHF 24408), now in the Royal Ontario Museum. 
That collection had "some six hundred and twenty-five skins from the 
Philippines . . . collected between 18 April 1909 and 21 November 1 910, by 
J. J. Mounsey, an engineer. It appears that the places visited by him were 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(2)] 276 

Mindoro, Luzon, Samar, Leyte, Cebu and Mindanao" (Hachisuka 193 1). The 
Royal Ontario Museum has 7 birds of the genus Dicaeum collected by 
Mounsey between 1 May 1909 and 12 October 1910. One, Dicaeum a. 
australe, was also collected at Camp Ialiti, Cebu, but on 24 July 1910. We 
conclude that D. trigonostigma palUdius was extant on Cebu Island until at 
least July of 1 9 10. 

Acknowledgements: We thank Dr. F. Salomonsen for his assistance with the literature and 
Pat Urquhart for secretarial assistance. 

References : 

Bourns, F. S. & Worcester, D. C. 1894. Preliminary notes on the birds and mammals 

collected by the Menage scientific expedition to the Philippine Islands. Occ. Pap. Minn. 

Acad. Nat. Set.: 1-64. 
Delacour, J. & Mayr, E. 1946. Birds of the Philippines. New York: MacMillan. 
du Pont, J. E. 1 97 1. Philippine Birds. Greenville: Delaware Museum of Natural History. 
Hachisuka, M. 193 1. The Birds of the Philippine Islands, with notes on the mammal fauna. 1. 

London : Witherby. 
Rabor, D. S. 1959. The impact of deforestation on birds of Cebu, Philippines, with new 

records for that Island. Auk 76 : 37-43. 
Salomonsen, F. 1967. Family Dicaeidae, flowerpeckers. In Paynter (ed.), Check-list of Birds 

of the World. XII. Museum of Comparative Zoology, Cambridge, Massachusetts. 
Sharpe, R. B. 1885. Catalogue of the Passeriformes or perching birds, in the collection of 

the British Museum. Fringilliformes. 1. London. 

Address: D. M. Richardson and Dr. A. J. Baker, Department of Ornithology, Royal 
Ontario Museum, 100 Queen's Park, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5S 2C6. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Specimens of extinct, endangered or rare birds in the 

Merseyside County Museums, Liverpool 

by C. T. Fisher 

Received 10 June 1980 

This inventory covers specimens of extinct, endangered or rare bird taxa held 
by the Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Merseyside County Museums. 

Two major collections form the nucleus of these holdings. That of Lord 
Edward Smith Stanley, later XHIth Earl of Derby, was bequeathed to the 
City of Liverpool in 1 8 5 1 and was the foundation of the present institution. 
Canon H. B. Tristram's first collection was sold to the museum in 1896, 
whilst his second went to the Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia in 
1906. Most Derby and Tristram material is reasonably well documented and 
the former is also supported by archival records held in the Merseyside 
County Museums, the City of Liverpool Library or at Knowsley Hall, 
Liverpool. An account of many of the type specimens included in these 
collections has been published by Wagstaffe (1978). 

The criterion for inclusion of a taxon in the present list is mention by 
King (1978-1979), Fisher et al. (1969) or Greenway (1967), while the recogni- 
tion of a taxon as extinct follows Greenway (1967) and Morony et al. (1975). 


Unless otherwise indicated, each specimen is adult and in the form of a 
cabinet skin. The order and nomenclature of Peters (1931-1970) is followed 

277 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

except where Morony et at. (1975) or Greenway (1967) are used in place of 
the unpublished volumes 8 and 1 1 . 

coll. — collected by. 

ex. — unsexed specimen. 

leg. — received from. 

n.l. — unlabelled specimen. 

I # — extinct taxon. 

[D] —collection of the XHIth Earl of Derby. 

[T] — collection of Canon H. B. Tristram. 

B.M.N.H. — British Museum (Natural History), London. 

B.T.O. — British Trust for Ornithology. 

R.I.L. — Royal Institution, Liverpool. 

R.S.B.A. — Royal Society and British Association joint committee for 

the Zoology of the Sandwich Islands (donated by Alfred 

Newton, President). 
U.S.N.M. — United States National Museum, Smithsonian Institution, 

Z.S.M. — Museum of the Royal Zoological Society, London. 


Spheniscus demersus (Linnaeus) : 2 exx. — off the Cape of Good Hope, coll. E. L. Layard, 
[T]. <J — Seal Island, Table Bay, S. Africa, [D] leg. Warwick 1845. Imm.<J, 2 exx. (1 
mounted) — n.l. 

Diomedea albatrus Pallas: second year <J, 1 ex. — Hakodati, Japan, coll. Pryer, [T] leg. H. 

Procellaria parkinsoni G. R. Gray: juv. — Wellington, New Zealand, coll. 1873, [T]. 

Pterodroma caribbaea Carte: S — Cinchoma Point, Jamaica, coll. W. Bock 17. 11. 1879, [T] 
leg. E. Newton. 

Pterodroma phaeopygia phaeopygia (Salvin) : c? — Wenman Island, Galapagos Group, coll. 
R. H. Beck 3.8.1897, leg. W. Rothschild 1899. 

Pterodroma leucoptera leucoptera (Gould): 1 ex. — Makira, Solomon Islands, coll. G. E. 
Richards, [T]. 

Phalacrocorax carunculatus cartmculatus (Gmelin): juv. — Queen Charlotte Sound, New 
Zealand, leg. W. L. Buller 1901. 

Nannopterum harrisi (Rothschild) : <? — Narborough Island, Galapagos Group, coll. G. M. 
Green, leg. Rosenberg 1902. 

Zebrilus undulatus (Gmelin): 1 ex. — River Amazon, [D] leg. J. Gould 1835. 1 ex. — [D] 
leg. Tucker 1834. Both these specimens are described and figured in Forbes (1901). 1 ex. — 

Geronticus eremita (Linnaeus) : <J, ?, imm. $ — Saracenic Castle, Birajak, R. Euphrates, coll. 
H. B. Tristram 9.6.1881, [T]. Tristram (1882) describes the collection of these 3 birds. 6 — 
Sahara, coll . H . B . Tristram 3 . 6 . 1 8 5 6, [T] . <? — Ethiopia, [D] leg. J . Gould. 

Geronticus ftz/wtf(Boddaert): 3 ? ? — Transvaal, S. Africa, coll. T. Ayres 1871, [T], 2 $$ — 
[D] from Derby Aviary (one died in 1846). Imm. — South Africa, coll. Tucker 25.2.1839, 
[D]. 1 ex., imm. — South Africa, coll. Burk, [D]. 

Nipponia nippon (Temminck): 1 ex. — Shanghai, China, coll. Michie, [T] leg. Swinhoe 
1889. Imm. — Japan, [Tj. 1 ex. — Yezo, Japan, [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1 841. 

Lophotibis cristata (Boddaert) : <? — Malagasy, [T] leg. Liverpool Museum (previously from 
E. Gerrard). 4 <J <J, 2 ? ? — Malagasy, leg. E. Gerrard. 

Nesochen sandvicensis (Vigors): type specimen — Hawaiian Islands, [T] leg. Z.S.M. 
(previously obtained from T. C. Eyton). ? — Hawaiian Islands, [D] (died in Derby Aviary 
1837). Juv. — [D] (hatched in Derby Aviary I3.4.i834and died two days later). 

Chloephaga rubidiceps Sclater: 2 — Falkland Islands, coll. W. Gunn, on Sir J. Franklin's 
expedition, [T]. 1 ex.— Falkland Islands, coll. J. D. Hooker, [D] leg. W. Hooker 1 845 . ?— 
Falkland Islands, [D] leg. B. Isaacson 1 844. 1 ex. — Falkland Islands, coll. Whittaker, [D] 
leg. J. Leadbeater 1842. 1 ex. — Falkland Islands, coll. Antarctic expedition, ]D] leg. B. 
Isaacson. 1 ex. — leg. B.M.N.H. 1898. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 278 

Dendrocygna arborea (Linnaeus) : 1 ex. — Almezein, Santa Domingo, coll. A. S. Toogood 
1887, [T]. 1 ex.— Jamaica, [T] leg. T. C. Eyton. <?— [D] (died in Derby Aviary 1847). 

Asarcornis scutulata (S. Mviller): 2 99 — Kitta Djawa, Sumatra, coll. H. O. Forbes, [T]. 

Nesonetta aucklandica G. R. Gray: 9 — Auckland Islands, coll. Travers 1894, [TJ. 2 <?<J, 
2 9 9 — Auckland Islands, leg. W. Buller 1901. 

\Rhodonessa caryophyllacea (Latham): <J — Bengal, India, [T] leg. Lilford (died in Lilford 
Aviary 1882). 2 6 6, 9— [D] leg. T. C. Eyton. 9— leg. H. A. Fooks 1962 (died in Calcutta 
Zoological Gardens 1930). 9 (mounted) — n.l. 

\Camptorhynchus labradorius (Gmelin): S (mounted) — Halifax Harbour, Nova Scotia, 
Canada, coll. J. W. Wedderburn, Apr. 1852, [T] leg. J. W. Wedderburn 1876. Imm.<J 
(mounted) — [D] leg. J. Gould 1833. 9 (mounted) — North America, [D] leg. T. C. Eyton. 

Mergus octosetaceus Vieillot : <J — Bahia, Brazil, leg. C. J. Leyland 1859. 

Buteo galapagoensis (Gould) : imm : 9 — Albemarle Island, Galapagos Group, coll. Harris 
2 1. 1 1. 1 897. S — Albemarle Island, coll. Beck 18. 11. 1897. 1 ex. — Albemarle Island, coll. 
Harris 15. 11. 1897. All 3 leg. W. Rothschild 1899. 

Buteo solitarius Peale: 1 ex. — Island of Hawaii, coll. Aug. 1891, [T] leg. S. B. Wilson. 

Leucopternis polionota Kaup: 1 ex. — [D]. 

Morphnus guianensis (Daudin): 1 ex. (mounted) — n.l. 

Harpia harpyja (Linnaeus) : 1 ex. (mounted) — n.l. 

Pithecopbagajefferyi Ogilvie-Grant : 1 ex. — Philippine Islands, leg. B.T.O. 1969 (previously 
Hewitt collection, died in Paignton Zoo). 

Haliaeetus albicilla (Linnaeus): <J — Christiansund, Nordmore, Norway, coll. B. Hansen 
28.10.1926, leg. C. Richmond-Brown 1966. 2 exx. (mounted) — n.l. 

Falco peregrinus anatum Bonaparte: 9 — Beaverhills Lake, Alberta, Canada, coll. W. Rowan 
4.8.1938. (J — Beaverhills Lake, coll. W. Rowan 20.8.1929. 9 — Beaverhills Lake, coll. 
W. Rowan 24.9.1924. $ — Crescent Beach, Nova Scotia, Canada, coll. S. K. Patten 22.9.1924. 
9 — Drumheller, Alberta, coll. W. Rowan, May 1924. All 5 leg. B.T.O. 1969 (previously 
Hewitt collection). Imm. — Swan Island, Maine, U.S.A., coll. Dyer 25.2.1867. 

Falco peregrinus c as \«»/ Sharper <J> 1 ex. — Chile, [D] leg. Bridges 1842. 

Falco punctatus Temminck: 1 ex. — Mauritius, coll. 1873, [T] leg. A. C. Smith. 

Falco araea (Oberholser) : 2 <?<?, ? — Felicite, Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry 1879, [T]. 3 — 
Seychelles, coll. E. P. Wright 1868, [T] leg. A. Newton. 

Megapodius laperouse senex Hartlaub : 1 ex. — Pelew Islands, coll. Kubary 1 878, [T]. 

Macrocephalon maleo S. Miiller: 1 ex. — North Celebes, coll. von Faber 1883, [T] leg, 
Leiden Museum. 

Crax alberti alberti Fraser : 9 — [D]. 

Craxpinima Pelzeln : 9 — Brazil ; [D]. 

Pipilejacutinga (Spix) : 1 ex. — [D]. 

Oreopbasis derbianus G. R. Gray: 1 ex. — Volcan de Fuego, Duenas, Guatemala, [T] leg. 
O. Salvin. Type specimen: <j — Volcan de Fuego, coll. J. Quinones c. 1843, [D] leg. 
C. Klee per J. Bates. 

\Tympanuchus cupido cupido (Linnaeus): S — leg. W. H. Barrow 1957 (previously Adcock 

\Coturnix novae^elandiae Quoy and Gaimard: 9 — Plains, Port Cooper, Middle Island, 
New Zealand, coll. F. Strange 4.4.1849, [D] leg. J. Gould 1850. s — New Zealand, coll. 
F. Strange, [D] leg. J. Gould 1850. (J— New Zealand, [D] leg. Warwick 1845. <J, 9 
(mounted) — n.l. 

\Ophrysia super ciliosa (J. E. Gray): type specimens: <J, 9 — Himalayas, India, [D] leg. 
Tucker 1836. 

Tragopan melanocepbalus (J. E. Gray): <J, 9 — Kooloo, coll. G. Henderson (<J Feb. 1870), 
[TJ. 9 — Northwest Himalayas, [T] leg. J. H. Gurney. <J — India, [D] leg. Lockett 1849. 
Imm. <J— [D] leg. Warwick 1848. 6— [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1831. 9— [D] leg. Tucker 
1 83 1. Imm.<J — Punjab, India, coll. F. H. Kirby, leg. F. H. Kirby 1872. tf — Gurwhal, 
India, c? — n.l. 9 (mounted) — n.l. 

Tragopan blythi (Jerdon): S — leg. Spedan-Lewis Trust 1975. 

Tragopan caboti (Gould) : $ (mounted) — Himalayas, India. 

Crossoptilon crossoptilon crossoptilon (Hodgson): $ — Ta-Chun-Lu, Tibet, coll. Pratt 1890, 
[T] leg. H. Seebohm 1893. 

Hierophasis swinhoii (Gould) : ? — Tamsui, Formosa, coll. R. Swinhoe, Mar. 1865; [T]. 
$ — Formosa, coll. R. Swinhoe, [Tj. Juv. — leg. E. Bartlett 1871 (died in Zoological 
Gardens, London). $ — Formosa, leg. H. Bright. 

Lobiophasis bulrveri Sharpe: c?, 9 — Mt. Kalulong (2000 ft), Borneo, coll. C. Hose, May 
1893, [T]. 

279 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

Catreus wallichii (Hardwicke): $ — Gurlaah-in-Kotckhaie, coll. G. Henderson 6.2.1 871, 
[T] leg. G. Henderson. ?— [D] leg. J. E. Gray 1 845 . <?— Himalayas, [D] leg. Tucker 1832. 
<? — [D]. 2 juvs. — leg. L. Fraser 1866 (died in Zoological Gardens, London, 1865). <J — 
Punjab, leg. F. H. Kirby 1 872. c? (mounted) — n.l. 

Syrmaticus ellioti (Swinhoe): 2 cJ<J, ? — Ningpo, China, coll. R. Swinhoe 1872, [T]. <J — 
leg. Meinertzhagen 1904 (died in captivity 1893). 

Polyplectron emphanum Temminck: $ — Palawan, Philippines, coll. A. Everett, Feb. 1894, 
eg. E. Gerrard 1 899. <J (mounted) — leg. Cheltenham College Museum. 

Mesoenas unicolor (Desmurs): S — Savary, Malagasy, coll. Audebert 2.4.1878, [T] leg. 
Leiden Museum. 

Grus americana (Linnaeus): 1 ex. (mounted) — n.l. 

\Cabalus modestus (Hutton): 1 ex. — Mangare, Chatham Islands, coll. W. Hawkins 1892, 
[T] leg. H. O. Forbes. 1 ex. (pelvis only) — Chatham Islands. 

Tricholimnas sylvestris (Sclzter) : 1 ex. — Lord Howe Island, coll. E. L. Layard, [T]. 
\Nesoclopeus poeciloptera (Hartlaub): 1 ex. — Rewa river, Fiji Islands, coll. 1881, [T] leg. 
V. Williamson. 

\Por%anula palmeri Frohawk : 1 ex. (skin with attached sternum) — Laysan Island, coll. 
Palmer 1892, [T] leg. Hartlaub. 

\Pareudiastes pacificus Hartlaub and Finsch: 1 ex. — Samoa, coll. S. J. Whitmee 1873, PI* 
?— Punai, Samoa, coll. S. J. Whitmee 1872, [T]. 

\Porphyrio albus (White): 1 ex. (mounted) (the type of Porpbyrio stanleyi Rowley) — ? 
Lord Howe Island, [D] leg. W. Bullock 18 19. 

Rbynochetos jubatus J. Verreaux and Des Murs: <? — Baie du Sud, New Caledonia, coll. 
E. L. Layard 4.7.1878, [T]. 1 ex. (complete skeleton) — New Caledonia, leg. E. Gerrard 

Chloriotis nigriceps (Vigors): $ — Sirsa, Punjab, India, coll. G. Henderson 1870, [T]. <J — 

Haematopus ostrakgus meadewaldoi Bannerman: c? — Isla Graciosa, Canary Islands, coll. 
E. G. Meade- Waldo and H. B. Tristram 7.4.1890, [T]. 

Vanellus macropterus (Wagler) : 2 exx. — Timor, [D] leg. J. Gould 1841. 

Thinornis novaeseelandiae (Gmelin): 4 ? ? — S.E. Island, Chatham Islands; coll. W. Hawkins 
7.5.1892, 12.5. 1892, [T]. $— Chatham Islands, coll. W. Hawkins, leg. H. O. Forbes 1898. 

Numenius borealis (J. R. Forster): c? — Picton, Nova Scotia, Canada, coll. McCullock 
3.3.1835, [D] . 2 exx. (mounted) — leg. Cheltenham College Museum 1963. 1 ex. (mounted) 
— leg. Scarborough Museum 1963 (previously British Armitage collection). 

Coenocorypba aucklandica pustlla (Buller): 3 cJ<J, $ — S.E. Island, Chatham Islands, coll. 
W. Hawkins, May 1892, [T]. 2 ? ?— S.E. Island; coll. W. Hawkins May 1892, leg. H. O. 
Forbes 1898. 

Coenocorypba aucklandica buegeli (Tristram) : type specimen — The Snares, off New Zealand, 
coll. A. von Hiigel 23.1 1. 1874, [T]. This specimen is figured in Sir Walter Buller's "Birds of 
New Zealand" (2nd Ed.) as Gallinago pusilla Buller. 

Coenocorypba aucklandica aucklandica (G. R. Gray) : 1 ex., juv. — Mount Teviot, Auckland 
Islands, coll. J. Mclvor, Dec. 1874, [T] leg. A. von Hiigel. 

Himantopus bimantopus novae^elandiae Gould. 1 ex. — New Zealand, coll. 1865, [T] leg. 
C. J. Langlands. 1 ex. — New Zealand, [D] leg. Stanley 1 845 . 

Himantopus himantopus knudseni Stejneger: <? — Oahu, Hawaiian Islands, coll. Jan. 1893, 
[T] leg. S.B.Wilson. 

f Rhinoptilus bitorquatus (Blyth) : 1 ex. — E. India, coll. 1850, [T] leg. T. C. Eyton. 

Larus audouinii Payraudeau : 1 ex. — [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1 841 . 1 ex. — [D]. 

Sterna balaenarum (Strickland) : <? — Robben Island, S. Africa, coll. E. L. Layard 22. 1 1 . 1 869, 
[T]. 1 ex. — Damaraland, S. Africa, coll. C. J. Andersson, [T]. 

\Pinguinus impennis (Linnaeus) : osteological material — n.l. 1 egg — [D]. 

\Raphus cucullatus (Linnaeus): osteological material — leg. H. P. Higginson 1866 and 
W.Stanley 1867. 

\Raphus solitarius (Selys-Longchamps) : osteological material — [T], 

Ptilinopus roseicapilla (Leeson): 2 $$ — Guam, Marianne Islands, coll. 23.2.1895, 5.7.1895, 
leg. W.Rothschild 1899. 

Drepanoptila holosericea (Temminck): S — Moindou, New Caledonia, coll. E. L. Layard 
18.10.1881, [T]. ?— Dombea, New Caledonia, coll. E. L. Layard 13.6.1878, [T]. 

Duculan>bartoni(Sha.tpe): 3 — Christmas Island, coll. J. J. Lister 1. 10.1887, [T], 

Ducula goliath (G. R. Gray): $ — Yahoue, New Caledonia, coll. E. L. Layard 2. 10. 1880, 

Hemiphaga novaeseelandiae chathamensis (Rothschild): <J — Chatham Islands, coll. W. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 280 

Hawkins, May 1892, [T]. 1 ex. — Chatham Islands, coll. W. Hawkins, leg. H. O. Forbes 

Columba trocaz troca% Heineken : ? — Madeira, [T] leg. Lilford Aviary (died in 189 1). S — 
Madeira, coll. F. D. Godman 26.6.1871, [T], <? — Madeira, coll. 26.2.1884. 

Columba trocaz bollii Godman: <? — La Galga, Palma, W. Canaries, coll. H. B. Tristram 
20.4.1889, [T]. c? — Gomera, W. Canaries, coll. H. B. Tristram 12.5. 1888, [T]. $ — laurel 
forest, St. Ursula (4200 ft), Teneriffe, coll. H. B. Tristram 27.4.1888, [T]. ?— Gomera, 
coll. E. G. Meade- Waldo 1888, leg. Lilford Aviary (died 1890). 

Columba junoniae Hartert: $ — Palma, W. Canaries, coll. H. B. Tristram 20.3.1890, [T]. 
? — La Galga, Palma, coll. H. B. Tristram 20.4.1889, [T]. <? — Gomera, W. Canaries, coll. 
H. B. Tristram 9.5.1888, [T]. <J, imm. — San Ambrosio, Valli Ermoso, Gomera, coll. H. B. 
Tristram, May 1888, [T]. ?— Gomera, coll. H. B. Tristram 9.5.1888, leg. W. H. Barrow 


Columba jouyi (Stejneger): 1 ex. — Riu Kiu Islands, Japan, coll. M. Namiye, Jan. 1887, [T]. 

Nesoenas mqyeri (Prevost) : 1 ex. — Mauritius, [D]. 

\Ectopistes migratoria (Linnaeus) : imm. — Old Soldier's Home, Columbia, coll. E. Coues 
14.10.1859, [T] leg. E. Coues. <?— Nebraska, coll. F. V. Hayden, [T] leg. U.S.N.M. <?— 
N. America, [T]. imm. — coll. Dyson, [D] leg. Dyson 1849. imm. — [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 
1842. $— [D] leg. W. Bullock Museum. <J, ?— [D]. <y— U.S.A., coll. Gough, leg. 
Rushton 1922. S — leg. E. R. Paton 1914. 2 S3 (1 mounted) — leg. Salisbury, South Wilts 
and Blackmore Museum. 2 3<S (1 mounted), ? — n.l. 2 eggs — leg. R. Wallace (previously 
from Jefferys 1904). 

Streptopelia picturata rostrata (Bonaparte) : 2 exx. — Marianne, Seychelles, coll. H. Warry 
1879, [T]. 1 ex. — Cousin Island, Seychelles, coll. H. Warry 1879, [T]. 1 ex. — Seychelles, 
coll. E. P. Wright 1868, [T] leg. A. Newton. 

Claravis godefrida (Temminck) : $ — [D] leg. Tucker 1836. <J — [D]. 

Gallicolumba rubescens (Viellot): 2 ? $ — Marquesas Islands, leg. H. Bright 1927. Imm. — 
(first bred in Europe) leg. H. Bright 1927. 3 — Nukahiva, Marquesas Islands, leg. H. 
Bright 1926. 

Didunculus strigirostris (Jardine) : <?, 1 ex. — Samoa, coll. 1874, [T] leg. S. J. Whitmee. 1 ex. 
— Mammea, Samoa, [T] leg. S. J. Whitmee. 2 $ $ (mounted) — Samoa. 

Strigops habroptilus G. R. Gray: 1 ex. — New Zealand, coll. W. Fox, [T]. 1 ex. — [T] leg 
J. H. Gurney. 1 ex. (mounted) — coll. 24.6. 1901. 1 ex. (mounted) — leg. Warrington 
Museum 1976. 1 ex. — Lake Wanaka, South Islands, leg. Hutton. ? (mounted) — Lyall Bay. 
<J, 2 exx. (mounted) — n.l. 5 exx. — n.l. 

| Nestor productus (Gould): 1 ex. (previously mounted) — Phillip Island, coll. 1788, [T]: 
bought by Gov. Phillip in 1788 and then passed to Dr. Leach. The bird was then bought by 
XHIth Earl of Derby at Christie's sale of 181 1, Tristram subsequently obtaining the 
specimen by exchange in 1873. 1 ex. — Phillip Island, [D] leg. Tucker 1833. This bird was 
given to Captain Sturt, probably by John Gould, to bring to England. It has a very long 
bill with a strongly grooved culmen. 

Vim peruviana (P. L. S. Muller): 1 ex. — Tahiti, [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1844. 1 ex. — 
Society Islands, [D] leg. Nightingale. S — [D]. 

Vini ultramarina (Kuhl): 2 exx., imm. — Marquesas Islands, coll. J. L. Green, Mar. 1880, 
[T]. 1 ex. — Marquesas Islands, [T] leg. E. Verreaux. 1 ex. — [D] leg. T. M. Williams 1847. 
1 ex. — Marquesas Islands, [D] leg. B. Isaacson 1845. 1 ex. — [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1845. 
1 ex. — Nukuhiva, Marquesas Islands, [D] leg. J. Gould 1843. 1 ex. (partial albino) — [D] 
leg. J. Leadbeater. 

Anodorhynchus glaucus (Viellot) : 1 ex. — Brazil, [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1835. 

\Ara tricolor Bechstein : 9 — Mexico, [D] (died in Derby Aviary). 

Aratinga guarouba (Gmelin) : 1 ex. — Brazil, [D] (died in Derby Aviary 1838). ? — Cayenne, 
[D] leg. W. Bullock Museum. 

\Conuropsis carolinensis carolinensis (Linnaeus): 1 ex. — Danford, Florida, coll. Loud, Mar. 
1884, [T] leg. H. K. Coale. 1 ex.— Fort Colt, coll. C. S. McCarthy, [T] leg. U.S.N.M. 1 ex. 
— [D] (died in Derby Aviary 1 8 1 2). 

Rhynchopsitta pachyrhyncha pachyrhyncba {Swa\mon) : 1 ex. — Mexico, [D] leg. Tucker. 1 ex. 
— Mexico, [D]. 1 ex. — [D]. 1 ex. — leg. Bootle Museum 191 5 (previously from R.I.L.). 

Pyrrbura cruentata (Wied): 1 ex. — [D] leg. Warwick 1848. 1 ex. — South America, [D] 
leg. W. Bullock museum. 1 ex. — leg. Bootle Museum 19 15 (previously from R.I.L.). 

Touit melanonotus(Wied) : 1 ex. — near Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, [D] leg. Warwick 1 848. 1 ex. 
—Brazil, [D] leg. Tucker 1831. 

Touit surda (Kuhl): 6— Bahia, Brazil; coll. E. Huster, [T] leg. H. K. Coale. <?— near 

281 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981:101(2)] 

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, [D] leg. Warwick 1848. <J — Pernambuco, Brazil, [D]. <J — leg. 
Warrington Museum 1976. 2 <J S — n.l. 

Amazona vittata vittata (Boddaert) : 1 ex. — [D] (died in Derby Aviary 1835). 

Amazona pretrei (Temminck) : 1 ex. — Rio Grande, Brazil, [D] leg. Johnson 1837. 

Amazona brasiliensis (Linnaeus): 1 ex. — Brazil, [D]. 

Amazona guildingii (Vigors) : syntype — St. Vincent Island, coll. L. Guilding 1826, [T] leg 
T. C. Eyton 1881 (previously from Z.S.M. 1826). 1 ex.— St. Vincent Island, [D] leg 
Tucker. 1 ex. — St. Vincent Island, leg. Norwich Castle Museum (previously from A. 

Amazona imperialis Richmond: 1 ex. — [D]. ? — Island of Dominica, Lesser Antilles, coll. 
1 0.1 2. 1 902, leg. W. H. Barrow 1957. 

Coracopsis nigra barklyi E. Newton: 1 ex. — Seychelles, coll. 1880; [T]. 2 exx. — Praslin 
Island, Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry 1879. [T]. 

\Psittacula eupatria rvardi (E. Newton): imm.<J — Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry, June 188 1, 
[T]. 9— Mahe, Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry, Mar. 1880, [T]. 

Psephotus pulcherrimus (Gould) : imm. <? — Oakey Creek, Darling Downs, New South Wales, 
coll. 1 3.7. 1 844, [D] leg. J. Gould 1845. $ — Condamine River, Darling Downs, coll. 
1 7. 5. 1 844, [D] leg. J. Gould 1845. c?— New South Wales, [D] leg. Williams 1845. 

Neophema chrysogaster (Latham): <J — Actaeon Islands, Tasmania, [D] leg. J. Gould 1840. 
9 — Tasmania, [D] leg. J. Gould 1840. Imm. — Hobart Town, Tasmania, [D] leg. W. Holme 
1828. $ (mounted) — n.l. 

Neophema pulchella (Shaw) : 2 $ 9— Victoria ; coll. S. B. Piers, [T]. <?— New South Wales, [T] 
leg. R. M. Middleton. $ — New South Wales, [D] (died in Derby Aviary 1844). 
<? — New South Wales, [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1836. <J — Hobart, Tasmania, [D] leg. J. 
Leadbeater 1836. ? — New South Wales, [D] leg. J . Leadbeater. $ — New South Wales, leg. 
R. Wagstaffe (previously Gee collection). $ — leg. Ismay. 6 (mounted) — n.l. 

Neophema splendida (Gould) : <J, $ — Swan River, Australia, [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1846. 

Eunymphicus cornutus uvaeensis (Layard and Layard): type specimens: £, 9 — Uvea, 
Loyalty Islands, coll. E. L. Layard 25.7.1880, [T]. Imm. — n.l. 

Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae cookii (G. R. Gray) : <? — Norfolk Island, coll. W. Crowfoot 
1886, [T] leg. P. H. Metcalfe. 1 ex. — [D]. This bird is the type of C. magnirostris Forbes and 
Robinson, formerly considered to be a synonym of C. zealandicus (Latham) (see Sims 1953). 

^Cyanoramphus z^l^ndicus (Latham): 9 — Tahiti, [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1845. <J — Tahiti, 
[D] leg. J. Banks (previously from W. Bullock Museum). 

Cyanoramphus auriceps for best Rothschild: 1 ex. — Chatham Islands, leg. W. Rothschild 1927 
(previously Palmer collection). 

Cyanoramphus malherbi Souance: 1 ex. — South Island, New Zealand, coll. P. Seymour 
1891, [T]. 9— Port Cooper, coll. F. Strange, [D] leg. J. Gould 1850. 1 ex. — n.l. 

Pezoporus wallicus flaviventris North : 1 ex. — South Australia, coll. Peele ; [T]. 1 ex. — 
Australia, [D]. 

Pezoporus wallicus wallicus (Kerr) : 1 ex. — Australia, coll. W. Hornby 1 7. 5 . 1 847, [D]. 3 exx. 
— Australia, [D]. 1 ex. — leg. J. Ismay. 2 exx. (1 mounted) — n.l. 

Geopsittacus occidentalis Gould: 1 ex. — Australia, [D] leg. Sturt (previously from J. Gould 

Phaenicophaeus pyrrhocephalus (Pennant) : 1 ex. — Ceylon, [TJ. 1 ex. — [D], 1 ex. (mounted) 
— n.l. 

\Coua delalandei (Temminck): 1 ex. — Malagasy, [D]. (See Morgan 1975.) 

Otus insularis (Tristram) : type specimen — Mahe, Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry, Apr. 
1880, [T]. 

Ninox novaeseelandiae undulata (Latham) : 1 ex. — Norfolk Island, coll. P. H. Metcalfe 1888, 


Sceloglaux albifacies albifacies (G. R. Gray) : 2 exx. — New Zealand, coll. E. Stanley, [D] leg. 
E. Stanley. 9 — Otago, South Island, New Zealand, leg. E. Gerrard. 

\Aegotheles savesi Layard and Layard: type and unique specimen: $ — Tonque, near 
Noumea, New Caledonia, coll. M. Saves 1 1.4. 1880, [Tj. 

Ramphodon dohrnii (Bourcier and Mulsant): <J — Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, leg. Taylor 

Coeligena prunellei (Bourcier) : 6 (mounted) — [D] leg. Williams 1847. 6 (mounted) — [D] 
leg. J. Leadbeater 1842. S y 9 — New Granada, Columbia, S. America, coll. J. Nichol 1962, 
leg. J. Nichol collection. 1 ex. (mounted) — leg. Taylor collection. 1 ex. (mounted) — n.l. 

Pharomachrus mocino mocino de la Llave : <? — Rashe, Vera Paz, Guatemala, coll. O. Salvin, 
Mar. i860, [T]. Imm. 9 — [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1844. 2 <?<?, 9 — Coban, Vera Paz, coll. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 282 

A. de Lattre, June 1843, [D]. 2 3 3 — [D]. 3 — Guatemala. 4 33 (2 mounted), ? (mounted) 
— 11.1. 

Halcyon cinnamomina cinnamomina Swainson: 3, 9 — Guam, Marianne Islands, coll. W. 
Rothschild 29.1. 1895 (<?), 4.2.1895 ($), leg. W. Rothschild 1899. 

Brachypteracias leptosomus (Lesson) : 3 — interior of Malagasy, coll. A. Majastre 24.4.1 881, 
[T]. 1 ex.— Malagasy, coll. W. D. Cowan, [T]. 

Brachypteracias squamigera Lafresnaye: 9 — Mointenbato, Malagasy, coll. Audebert 
5.5.1878, [T] leg. Leiden Museum. 1 ex. — Malagasy, coll. W. D. Cowan, [T]. 

Atelornis pittoides (Lafresnaye) : 1 ex. — Ankafana, South Betsileo, Malagasy, coll. W. D. 
Cowan, Mar. 1881, [T]. 1 ex.— Malagasy, coll. Crossley, [T]. 

Atelornis crossleyi Sharpe : 1 ex. — Malagasy, [T] leg. E. Gerrard. 

Rhinoplax vigil {}. R. Forster): 1 ex. (mounted) — Malay Peninsula, coll. Glasspoole, leg. 
Norwich Museum. 1 ex. (mounted) — North British Borneo. 

Dryocopusjavensis richardsi Tristram : type specimen : $ — Tsu-Shima Island, Japan, coll. 
G. E. Richards 24.8.1875, [T]. 

Dendrocopos borealis borealis (Viellot): 3 — Rosewood, Florida, U.S.A., coll. G. W. 
Chamberlain 18. 11. 1883, [T] leg. H. K. Coale. 3— North America, coll. J. G. Bell 30.8.1847, 
[T] leg. U.S.N.M. <?, 9— [D] leg. W. Bullock Museum 181 1. 3— U.S.A., [D]. 

Campephilus principalis principalis (Linnaeus): 3 — Louisiana, [T] leg. U.S.N.M. ? — 
Texas, coll. Drummond, Feb. 1 8 3 5 , [D]. 2 3 3, 2 99— [D]. 

Campephilus imperialis (Gould): 3, 9 — Mexico, [D] leg. J. Gould. 


Myrmotherula erythronotus(H.aLtt\a.ub): 3 — South America, [D] leg. J. Gould 1831. ? — [D] 
leg. Tucker 1831. 

Pyriglena atra (Swainson) : 3 — [D] leg. Johnson 1833. 

Calyptura cristata (Vieillot) : 1 ex. — [D] leg. J. Warwick 1 849. 1 ex. — [D]. 1 ex. — n.l. 

Cotinga maculata (Miiller): imm.<J — Brazil, [D] leg. Rumford 1835. 3 — leg. Bootle 
Museum 191 5 (previously from R.I.L.). 3 (mounted) — leg. Connell. 3 — n.l. 

Cephalopterus penduliger Sclater: 1 ex. — [D] leg. W. Hooker 1843. 

Pitta gurneyi Hume: 3 — Bankasoon, Burma, coll. W. Davison 16.4.1877, [T]. 

Xenicus longipes longipes (Gmelin) : 3, $ — Karamea Ranges, South Island, New Zealand, 
coll. 1895, leg. H. B. Tristram 1 898. ?— New Zealand, [T]. 

Xenicus longipes stokesii Gray : 3 — Taupo, North Island, New Zealand, coll. J. von Haast, 
Aug. 1866, [TJ. 

\Xenicus lyalli (Rothschild): 1 ex. (formerly spirit specimen) — Stephens Island, New 
Zealand, leg. H. B. Tristram 1898. 

Neodrepanis hypoxanthus Salomonsen: 3 — east of Tananarive, Malagasy, coll. W. D. 
Cowan, July 188 1, [TJ. 

Coracina typica (Hartlaub) : 3, 9 — Mauritius, coll. E. Newton, Nov. 1866, [TJ. 

Hypsipetes borbonicus horhonicus (J . R. Forster) : 9 — Reunion, coll. H. H. Slater 1875, [TJ. 

Hypsipetes borbonicus olivaceus Jardine and Selby : 3 — Mauritius, coll. H. H. Slater 1874, [TJ. 
1 ex.— Mauritius, [T] leg. T. C. Eyton. 

Xenopirostris polleni (Schlegel): 3, 9 — Malagasy, coll. J. Wills 1893, [T]. 3 — Malagasy, 
coll. Grandidier, [T] leg. Leiden Museum. 

Oriolia bernieri Geoffroy: <?, imm. 3 — Savary, Malagasy, coll. Audebert 16. 3. 1878 and 
I7.n.i877(imm), [T] leg. Leiden Museum. 

Troglodytes troglodytes hirtensis Seebohm : 9, 1 ex. (formerly spirit specimens) — St. Kilda, 
Outer Hebrides, Scotland, leg. A. G. Ferguson 1905. 

Troglodytes aedon mesoleucus (Sclater): 2 33 — Fonds St. Jacques, St. Lucia, coll. G. A. 
Ramage, Apr. 1889, [T]. 

Nesomimus trifasciatus trifasciatus (Gould): 3, 9 — Gardner Island, Galapagos Group, coll. 
Drowne(<2),Hull(9) 3 1. 10.1897, leg. W. Rothschild 1899. 

Ramphocinclus brachyurus sanctaeluciae Cory: 3, 9 — Fonds St. Jacques, St. Lucia, coll. 
G. A. Ramage 26.3.1889 ( c?), 1.4.1889 ( 9), [T\. 

Copsychus sechellarum Newton: 4 exx. — Marianne, Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry 1879, [T]. 

Cichlherminia Iherminieri sanctaeluciae (Sclater): $ — Fonds St. Jacques, St. Lucia, coll. 
G. A. Ramage 23.3.1889, [T]. 

Phaeornis palmeri Rothschild: $ — Kauai Island, Hawaiian Islands, coll. S. B. Wilson, 
Sep. 1888, [TJ. 

Turdus poliocephalus prit^bueri Layard: neotype: imm.(? — Lifu Island, Loyalty Islands, 
coll. C. L. Layard 10.1.1878, [T] (see Wagstaffe 1978). 4 33, 2 9 9 — Kepeneku, Lifu Island, 
coll. E. L. Layard, Aug. 1878, [T]. 

283 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

T urdus poliocephalus mareensis Layard and Tristram: type specimen: 3 — Mare Island, 
Loyalty Islands, coll. E. L. Layard 22.5.1879, [T]. 3 33, 9 — Mare Island, coll. E. L. Layard, 
Oct. 1879 ( 9), Oct. and Nov. 1881, June 1882, [T]. 

Turdus poliocephalus poliocephalus Latham: imm. (with attached sternum) — Norfolk Island, 
coll. W. M. Crowfoot 1887, [T]. 3— Norfolk Island, coll. E. L. Layard, Oct.1879 [T]. 3, 9— 
Norfolk Island, coll. J. H. Brenchley June 1865, [T] leg. Tweeddale Collection. 1 ex. — [D] 
leg. J. Leadbeater 1836. 3 — Norfolk Island, leg. Norwich Museum 1941. 

Paradoxornis heudei David: 3 — Nanking, China, coll. F. W. Styan, Feb. 1890, [T]. ? — 
Nanking, coll. Heude, Dec. 1872, [T]. 

Picathartesgymnocephalus (Temminck): imm. — Gabon, coll. Ussher, [T] leg. J. H. Gurney. 

\Gerygone igata insular is Ramsay: 1 ex. — Lord Howe Island, coll. Saunders 1888, [T]. 

Petroica traversi (Buller) : 3, 9 — Little Mangare, Chatham Islands, coll. W. Hawkins 1892, 


Terpsiphone corvina (E. Newton) : 3 6* 6", imm. 3, 9 — Ladigur, Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry 
1879, [T]. <?, 9— Seychelles, coll. 1880, [T]. 3, 9— [T]. 

Terpsiphone hourbonnensis desolata Salomonsen: 3 — Mauritius, coll. H. H. Slater 1875, [T]. 
? 9— Mauritius, [T] leg. A. C. Smith. 3— Mauritius, [T] leg. E. Newton. 

Pomarea mendo^ae (Hartlaub) : imm. — Marquesas Islands, coll. J. Green, Mar. 1880, [T]. 

Metabolus rugensis (Hombron and Jacquinot): 4 33 (black and white plumage) — Truk 
Island, Caroline Islands, coll. T. Kubary 1878 (one in June), [T] leg. Museum Godeffroy, 
Hamburg. 3 (cinnamon and white plumage) — Truk Island, coll. T. Kubary, June 1878, [T] 
leg. Museum Godeffroy. 

Turnagra capensis tanagra (Schlegel) : 9 — North Island, New Zealand, coll. F. Strange, [D] 
leg. J. Gould 1850. 

Turnagra capensis capensis (Sparrman): 3, 9 — Tiopo, South Island, New Zealand, coll. 
J. von Haast, Sep. 1873, [Tj. 1 ex. — South Island, coll. Lyall, [Tj. Imm. — South Island, 
[T] leg. Eyton Museum. 9— Port Cooper, coll. F. Strange, [D] leg. J. Gould 1850. 3— [D] 
leg. J. Gould 1850. 2 exx — [D] leg. E. Stanley 1845. <*— [D] leg. I. E. Warwick 1845. 1 ex. 
— [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1841. 3, 9 — Stephens Island, New Zealand, leg. W. Buller 1901. 

Anthreptes pallidigaster Sclater and Moreau: 3, 9 — Amani (3000 ft), Eastern Usambara 
Mts., Tanzania, coll. J. G. Williams 23.9.1960, leg. J. G. Williams 1966. 

Meliphaga cassidix (Gould)* : 9 — Gaskell, Melbourne, Victoria, coll. E. P. Ramsay, Jan. 
1873, [T]. (J— Western Port Bay, Port Philip Heads, Victoria, coll. S. B. Piers, [T]. 9— 
Victoria, coll. S. B. Piers, [T]. 

Notiomystis cincta cincta (Du Bus) : 9— New Zealand, coll. Lyall 1850, [Tj. 3 — New Zea- 
land, [T]. 3, 9— New Zealand. 

Moho hraccatus (Cassin): 3, 9 — Kauai, Hawaiian Islands, coll. Sep. 1888, [TJ leg. S. B. 

■\Moho nobilis (Merrem) : <?— Kaawaloa, Hawaii, coll. S. B. Wilson 26.5.1887, [TJ. 1 ex. — 
Hawaiian Islands, [D] leg. Brooke 1830. 1 ex. — Hawaiian Islands, possibly coll. J. Cook, 
[D] leg. W. Bullock Museum. 2 exx. — Hawaii, leg. H. H. Jones 1 878. 

\Anthornis melanura melanocephala Gray: 3, 9 — Chatham Islands, coll. W. Hawkins 1895, 
[TJ. 2 3 3— Chatham Islands, coll. Lyall, [TJ. 

Leucope^a semperi Sclater: 9, 1 ex. — Fonds St. Jacques, St. Lucia, coll. G. A. Ramage 
5.4.1889, [T]. 

Palmeria dolei (Wilson): imm. 6* — Haleakala, (5000 ft.), Maui, Hawaiian Islands, coll. 
R. C. L. Perkins, May 1896, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 3 — Molokai (4-5000 ft.), Hawaiian Islands, 
coll. R. C. L. Perkins 9.7.1893, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 

Hemignathus ob scums procerus Cabanis: 3, 9— Kauai, Hawaiian Islands, coll. S. B. Wilson. 
Sep. 1888, [T]. 3, 9— Kaholuamano, Kauai, coll. R. C. L. Perkins Oct. 1895, leg. R.S.B.A, 

f Hemignathus obscurus obscurus (Gmelin): 9 — Hawaiian Islands, coll. J. K. Townsend, [D] 
leg. J. J. Audobon, June 1838. 9 — above Amaulu (2000 ft.), Hilo, Hawaii, coll. R. C. L. 
Perkins, Dec. 1895, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 

Hemignathus lucidus hanapepe Wilson: 3 — Kauai, Hawaiian Islands, coll. S. B. Wilson, Sep. 
1 888, [T]. 1 ex.— [D] leg. J. Leadbeater 1 846. 1 ex.— Kauai, [D]. 

Hemignathus lucidus affinis Rothschild : imm. 3 — Haleakala, Maui, Hawaiian Islands, coll. 
R. C. L. Perkins, Oct. 1896, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 

Hemignathus rvilsoni Rothschild: 3 — Mana, Hawaii, coll. S. B. Wilson, Mar. 1888, [T]. 
Imm.6" — Kau, Hawaii, coll. R. C. L. Perkins, June 1895, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 

*Zosteropidae: Merseyside County Museums once held a large number of specimens, including several types. They are 
now missing and it is feared they were destroyed when the museum was bombed during the Second World War. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 284 

Loxops coccinea coccinea (Gmelin): 6 — Hilo, Hawaii, coll. C. J. Wetmorc May 1875, [T]. 
<?, imm. $ — Kau, Hawaii, coll. R. C. L. Perkins June 1895, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 

Loxops coccinea ochracea Rothschild: $ — Haleakala, Maui, Hawaiian Islands, coll. R. C. L. 
Perkins, May 1896, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 

\Loxops coccinea rufa (Bloxam) : 6 — Oahu, Hawaiian Islands, coll. J. K. Townsend, [D] 
leg. J. J. Audobon, 1838. 

Paroreomy^a maculata bairdi (Stejneger) : ? — Kauai, Hawaiian Islands, coll. S. B. Wilson, 
Sep. 1888, [T]. 

Paroreomy^a maculata flammea (Wilson) : <?, ?, imm. — Molokai, Hawaiian Islands, coll. 
R. C. L. Perkins, May 1893 ( ?), 18.6.1893 (<j), 25.6.1893 (imm.), leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. [Possibly 

Paroreomy^a maculata montana (Wilson): $ — Lanai, Hawaiian Islands [possibly extinct], 
coll. R. C. L. Perkins, Jan. 1894, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 

Psittirostra psittacea (Gmelin): $ — Kaawaloa, Hawaiian Islands, coll. S. B. Wilson 
31. 5. 1887, [T]. 9 — Hawaiian Islands, [T] leg. Jardine Museum 1886. Type specimens: 
<J, $ — Hawaiian Islands, [D] leg. Leverian Museum 1806. ? — Hawaiian Islands, [D] leg. 
J. Leadbeater 1849. 

\Loxioides palmeri (Rothschild): ? — Hawaii, coll. S. B. Wilson, Jan 1893, [T]. 

Loxioides bailleui (Oustalet): $ — Hawaii, coll. S. B. Wilson 14.6. 1887, [T]. 

\Loxioides kona (Wilson) : ? — Mauna Loa (4000 ft.), Kona district, Hawaii, coll. R. C. L. 
Perkins, Sep. 1892, leg. R.S.B.A. 1900. 

Agelaius xanthomus xanthomus (Sclater): <? — N. Puerto Rico, coll. R. Swift, [T] leg. 
U.S.N.M. 1 ex.— [D] leg. Bridges 1842. 

\Quiscalus palustris (Swainson): <? — Rio Lerma, Mexico, leg. Bootle Museum 191 5 
(previously R.I.L.). 

Carduelis cucullata Swainson : $ — Orinoco, Venezuela, coll. H. K. Coale, [T]. 9 — South 
America, coll. H. K. Coale, [T]. $ — "Spanish Main", [D] (died in Derby Aviary 1 846). 

Foudia sechellarum Newton: <?, 9 — Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry, June 1882, [Tj. 2 ? 9 — 
Marianne, Seychelles, coll. H. L. Warry 1879, [Tj. 

Foudia flavicans Newton: <? — Rodriguez Island, coll. J. B. Balfour, [TJ. 

f Aplonis fusca hulliana Mathews: 3 exx. — Lord Howe Island, coll. E. Saunders 1888, [Tj. 

\Necropsar leguati Forbes: type and unique specimen — "Madagascar" (but perhaps 
from Met Island, off Rodriguez, /&& Peters etal. 1962 (15) ), [D] leg. M. Verreaux 1850. 

Callaeas cinerea wilsoni (Bonaparte) : 1 ex. — Wellington, North Island, New Zealand, coll. 
W. Buller, June 1873, [T]. 1 ex.— North Island, coll. F. Burton, [T]. 1 ex.— coll. M. 
McDorniele, [D]. 

Callaeas cinerea cinerea (Gmelin) : 2 exx. — South Island, New Zealand, [T]. Type speci- 
men — Queen Charlotte Sound, coll. J. Cook, [D] leg. Leverian Museum 1806. 1 ex. — [D] 
leg. E. Stanley 1849. 1 ex. — [D] leg. E. Stanley 1845. 1 ex. — [D] leg. Warwick 1845. 2 
exx. — [D]. 2 exx. (mounted) — n.l. 

Creadion carunculatus carunculatus (Gmelin) : imm. (mounted) — n.l. 

\Heteralocha acutirostris (Gould) : $ (mounted) — n.l. 

Artamus leucorhynchus pelewensis Finsch: ? — Palau Islands, coll. T. Kubary, [T] leg. 
Museum Godeffroy, Hamburg. 

Corvus tropicus Kerr: 9— Kona, Hawaii, coll. S. B. Wilson, Mar. 1888, [Tj. 

Acknowledgements; I am grateful to Dr. M. J. Largen (Keeper of Vertebrate Zoology, 
Merseyside County Museums) for his extensive advice during the preparation of this paper. 
I would also like to acknowledge a considerable debt to Mr. P. J. Morgan (National Museum 
of Wales) and Mr. R. Wagstaffe for the benefit of their unpublished research on the Liver- 
pool collections and to others who have given advice and assistance, including C. W. 
Benson, W. R. P. Bourne, J. M. Forshaw, D. T. Holyoak, W. B. King, G. Y. Mclnnes, 
D. G. Medway, P. Paton and the staff of the Subdepartment of Ornithology, British 
Museum (Natural History). 


Fisher, J., Simon, N. & Vincent, J. 1969. The Red Book {Wildlife in Danger). I.U.C.N. and 
Collins : London. 

Forbes, H. O. 1901. Note on a species of Bittern {Zebrilus pumilus) from South America. 
Bull. Liv. Mus. 3(2) : 61, pis. 1-2. 

Greenway, J. C. 1967. Extinct and VanishingBirds of the World. 2nd Ed. Dover Publications : 
New York. 

King, W. B. 1978-1979. I.U.C.N. Red Data book. Vol. 2 (Aves). I.U.C.N., Morges, Switzer- 

285 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

Morgan, P. J. 1975. A catalogued specimen oiCoua delalandei (Temminck) (Cuculidae) in 

Merseyside County Museums, Liverpool. Bull. Brit. Orn.Cl. 95(2) : 663-4. 
Morony, J. J., Bock, W. J. & Farrand, J. 1975. Reference List of the Birds of the World. 

American Museum of Natural History : New York. 
Peters, J. L. 1931-1970. Check List oj Birds of the World. Vols. 1-15. Museum of Comparative 

Zoology, Cambridge, Mass. 
Sims, R. W. 1953. On the status of Cyanorhamphus magnirostris (Forbes and Robinson). 

Bull. Br it. Orn. CI. 73(9) : 104-105 . 
Tristram, H. B. 1882. Ornithological notes of a journey through Syria, Mesopotamia and 

Southern Armenia in 1 8 8 1 . Ibis (4)6 : 41 5-41 6. 
Wagstaffe, R. 1978. Type specimens of Birds in the Merseyside County Museums. Merseyside 

County Museums : Liverpool. 

Address: Clem Fisher, Dept Vertebrate Zoology, Merseyside County Museums, William 
Brown Street, Liverpool L3 8EN. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Preliminary review of the Clay-coloured Robin Turdus 
grayi with redesignation of the type locality of the 
nominate form and description of a new subspecies 

by R. W. Dicker man 

Received 28 July 1980 

In attempting to identify the races of specimens of Turdus grayi collected on the 
Pacific lowlands and in the Motagua River Valley of Guatemala during the 
course of studies of mosquito transmitted viruses, it became necessary to 
re-evaluate the geographic variation throughout the range of the species. 
Such a major revision was not possible with the currently available material 
due to the paucity of specimens in unworn plumage and also in part due to 
post-mortem colour changes. However, it seems important to clarify the 
status of the nominate population, since the designation of the type locality 
by Griscom (1930) appears erroneous. Because of the resultant recognition 
of the characters of the true nominate population, it also becomes necessary 
to rename the widely distributed race that has long been considered to be 
Turdus grayi grayi. 

The species was described by Bonaparte (1837) from a collection of birds 
obtained during a "fortnight's scientific tour" in Guatemala by Col. Velazquez 
deLeon. The location of the species type is unknown. 

Hellmayr (1938) wrote that the type was in the Lord Derby Collection, 
which went to the Liverpool Museum. Wagstaffe (1978) did not include it in 
the list of the types of the Merseyside County Museums (= Liverpool 
Museum), and M. J. Largen, current Keeper of Zoology kindly confirmed 
by letter that the Velazquez types were not in that collection. They apparently 
never were in the Derby Collection. The confusion may have arisen because 
Bonaparte presented reports on 3 collections at the same meeting of the 
Zoological Society of London. The third was on a collection by Leadbeater 
and the statement is made (Bonaparte 1838: 119) that birds from Leadbeater 
were to be part of the Derby Collection. 

Velazquez apparently landed at Ystapa (=Ixtapa), the only Pacific port 
then in use (San Jose was not established until 1853 — Squier 1858) and prob- 
ably travelled via Naranja and Escuintla to Palin, and thence either through 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 286 

Antigua or Lago Atitlan to Guatemala City.* All the species he obtained occur 
along this route, contra Griscom (1930: 6) who erroneously thought 
"Pachysylvia {—Hylophilus) decurtata" was restricted to the Caribbean rain 
forest (see also Phillips 1966). Further, Griscom, in justification of his 
designation of the Department of Alta Vera Paz, Guatemala as the type 
locality of Bonaparte's Turdus grayi, wrote (1930: 6) "It is apparent that Col. 
Velasquez must have bought a collection of the trade-skins of the day . . .". 
Yet in recounting the history of Guatemalan ornithology (Griscom 1932 : 4), 
he cited Bonaparte's 1837 paper as the earliest record of ornithological 
collecting in Guatemala and stated that it was from 1842 onwards that 
collectors began visiting the country and training Indian hunters in making 
trade skins. The type of Turdus grayi was without doubt taken along the 
highway from Ixtapa to Guatemala City. Griscom (1930: 6) wrote "Post- 
mortem color change in this species is so pronounced that specimens taken 
prior to 1900 are usually worthless for subspecific comparison. It con- 
sequently makes little or no difference whether the type still exists or not" (italics 
mine). This is true where subtle colours, especially olive and grey, are 
involved, but is less true in the case of deeply coloured forms. 

Although the Port of San Jose was not in use in the 1830's, the road from 
Ystapa passed nearby and there are specimens of "umbrinus" from San Jose. 
Van Tyne & Trautman (1941) restricted Bonaparte's Scolopacinus rufiventris to 
San Jose. I therefore designate San Jose as the type locality of Turdus grayi 

With this identification of the nominate form, the following subspecies 
of T. grayi may be recognized from Central America in this preliminary 
review. These are arranged geographically north to south. 

Turdus grayi tamaulipensis 

Turdus grayi tamaulipensis Nelson, Auk vol. 14, p. 75, 1897; type locality 
Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas, Mexico. 

Diagnosis: Ventrally this and microrhynchus are the palest of the known 
subspecies ; their bellies are creamy or pinkish-buff, the flanks and breast are 
buffy. Dorsally, tamaulipensis (collected 1941), microrhynchus (1958), linnaei 
(1964), and megas from Guatemala (1969) are inseparable. 

Range: Central Nuevo Leon and southern Tamaulipas and northern 
Veracruz inland to southeastern San Luis Potosi, and the arid northern part 
of the Yucatan in Campeche, Yucatan and Quintana Roo, extending south to 
at least northern Belize. 

Discussion: At present the population of the Yucatan Peninsula is designated 
tamaulipensis, although it is disjunct from the remaining range of that form 
by several hundred kilometers, with the very dark form lanyoni (subsp. nov. 
described below) occupying the intervening region. There is insufficient 
useful material from the Yucatan to evaluate its relationship to genuine 
tamaulipensis or to megas of Guatemala, which is in closer geographic proxim- 

y* Turdus grayi microrhynchus 

Turdus grayi microrhynchus Lowery and Newman, Occ. Pap. Louisiana State 
University Museum of Zoology no. 22, p. 5-8, 1949; type locality Santa Maria 
del Rio, central-southern San Luis Potosi, Mexico. 

♦Route determined from road map of the Department of Guatemala published in "Atlas 
Guatemalteco en ocho cartas", Formadas y grabadas en Guatemala, 1832. 

287 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

Diagnosis: Similar in colour to tamaulipensis but bill decidedly smaller and 

Range: Known only from the vicinity of the type locality. 

Discussion: This form was based on 4 males and 2 females. I have seen 2 
additional specimens and those indeed do have small bills. The extent of the 
range of this form has yet to be determined. 

Turdus grayi lanyoni subsp. nov. 

Type: Adult male no. 824182, American Museum of Natural History, 
collected in the [San Andres] Tuxtla Mountains, 0.5 km west of Cerro 
Balzapote, Veracruz, Mexico on 8 November 1974 by Mario A. Ramos, 
prepared by Richard J. Oehlenschlager (original field no. "MEX - 5422"). 

Diagnosis: Darker dorsally and ventrally than tamaulipensis, microrhynchus , 
linnaei, or megas \ nearer grayi but less deeply ochraceous ventrally, belly much 
paler, dorsally similar to nominate grayi. 

Range: Veracruz and Caribbean drainage of Oaxaca (integrades with 
linnaei north of Matias Romero at Sarabia), southeast through Tabasco, across 
the base of the Yucatan Peninsula into southern Belize south to at least Lago 
Izabal, Guatemala, and through the humid Caribbean slopes of Chiapas into 
the tropical northern interior of Guatemala. 

Remarks: With Griscom's assignment of the type locality of grayi to Alta 
Vera Paz, the name has been used for all dark populations north (and indeed 
south) of Guatemala. Because of the ecological variation within Alta Vera 
Paz, moderately typical examples of 2 or even 3 forms could probably be 
found there (i.e. grayi, lanyoni, and perhaps megas). In northern Veracruz, 
along the Lago Tamiahua (Moctezuma) and in adjacent Puebla (Rancho 
Ajengibre, Tuxpan Road) lanyoni integrades with tamaulipensis. The detailed 
zones of intergradation with the adjacent southern subspecies have yet to be 

Turdus grayi linnaei 

Turdus grayi linnaei Phillips 1966, Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. vol. 86, pp. 127-128; 
type locality Las Delicias, Chiapas, Mexico. 

Diagnosis: Ventrally similar to tamaulipensis but with belly, undertail 
coverts and throat slightly deeper in colour, more ochraceous, rather than 
creamy-buff; breast slightly darker and greyer. Slightly paler ventrally with 
somewhat greyer flanks than megas from Guatemala. 

Range: More xeric habitats of Pacific Oaxaca and adjacent lowlands of 
Chiapas, extending south in the interior of Chiapas to at least the Guatemala 
border. Extent of range in Guatemala is unknown. 

Remarks: This is a weak race and was not compared with megas in the 
original description. In a detailed revision, linnaei may not be separable from 
the normal variation within megas, although at present the range appears to 
be separated by the dark forms grayi and lanyoni. 

Turdus grayi grayi Bonaparte 

Turdus grayi Bonaparte. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1838, p. 116; type locality 
by above redesignation San Jose, Dept. Escuintla, Guatemala. 

Turdus grayi umbrinus Griscom. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. Novit. no. 438, 
pp. 5-6, 1930; type locality Finca El Cipris, near Mazatenango, Pacific 
lowlands of northwestern Guatemala. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(2)] 288 

Diagnosis: Darker and browner dorsally, similar to lanyoni; ventrally the 
most deeply ochraceous of all the subspecies. 

Range: Northwestern Guatemala, apparently extending north in the humid 
habitats of the mountains of southern Chiapas to Mapastepec. In Guatemala 
intergrades towards megas at San Jose and Panajachel. 

Discussion: Of the 21 specimens labelled "umbrinus" by Griscom in the 
AMNH collection, only 6 are in unworn plumage of use for comparisons. 
Eight juveniles are more richly coloured than a juvenile lanyoni and much 
more so than 3 juveniles of megas as defined below. Monroe (1968) could not 
distinguish "umbrinus", as individuals of the "dark type" occur at random 
in Honduras; moreover, the latter are likely to be intergrades with lanyoni, 
which may extend southward across the humid lower Montagua Valley. 
Actually, the range oigrayi is separated from the dark Honduran birds by the 
Guatemalan portion of the range of megas. 

Turdus grayi megas 

Turdus grayi megas Miller & Griscom 1925. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. Novit. 
no. 138, pp. 3-4; type locality Matagalpa, Nicaragua. 

Diagnosis: Paler throughout than grayi or lanyoni, ventrally slightly darker 
and buffier than linnaei, markedly darker than tamaulipensis. 

Range: From Pacific lowlands of Guatemala; near San Jose and Motagua 
River Valley (except the lower portion) south through Central America to 

Discussion: Miller & Griscom (1925) had available 3 specimens from 
Guatemala which they listed with a question mark as T. grayi grayi [ie. 
lanyoni]. Those specimens, all from the Lawrence collection, lack further data, 
but probably are lanyoni. However, Anthony collected at least one readily 
identifiable megas and probably others, but wear and bleaching is so advanced 
that it is not worth conjecturing the original colours of some birds, since 
there are good series available to provide a concept of the range in Guatemala. 
The one good megas available to Griscom was taken at "Puebla" [= near 
Quirigua, Motagua Valley] and was originally labelled as casius. On the label 
that name has been mostly erased and a line drawn through it; a question 
mark has been added, I believe by Griscom, and "= grayi Lg" has been 
added in his handwriting. It is a pale greyish-backed bird that is even greyer 
than a paratype of megas. 

Within the extensive range of megas as given above there may be distinctive 

populations that warrant recognition, but this awaits further study (for 

example the dark specimens from Honduras reported by Monroe 1968). The 

type and paratypes of megas are not separable from specimens from the 

Pacific lowlands and Motagua Valley of Guatemala collected in 1 969, although 

they do differ, as does grayi, from tamaulipensis as described by Miller & 

Griscom. _ , . 

Turdus grayi casius 

Planesticus casius Bonaparte, Compt. Rend. Acad. Sci. Paris, vol. 41, p. 657, 
1855; type locality, Panama. 

Diagnosis: A moderately pale race like megas but browner, less greyish; 
darker than tamaulipensis, browner than linnaei, much paler and less richly 
coloured than lanyoni oigrayi. 

Range: Costa Rica, Panama, and adjacent Colombia, northwestern Choco 
on the Gulf of Uraba. 

289 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

Discussion: The ranges of megas and casius in Nicaragua have yet to be 

Key to Subspecies of Turdus grayi 

1 . Dorsally pale and grey to greyish olive or greyish brown 2 

1 . Dorsally notably dark and brown 5 

2. Culmen short (less than 19 mm) microrhynchus 

2. Culmen larger 3 

3. Dorsally greyish brown casius 

3. Dorsally greyish olive 4 

4. Flanks and undertail coverts paler linnaei 

4. Flanks and undertail coverts darker megas 

5 . Belly ochraceous, breast flanks and undertail coverts deep ochraceous grayi 
5 . Belly paler buffy ochraceous, breast, flanks and undertail coverts paler lanyoni 

Acknowledgements: The curators of the James Ford Bell Museum of Natural History, 
University of Minnesota; the Delaware Museum of Natural History and the Louisiana 
State University Museum of Zoology are acknowledged for lending me fresh plumaged 
specimens from their collections. Allan R. Phillips was most helpful and stimulating with 
his critical aid. Some of the material was collected under permits from the Ministerio de 
Agricultura de Guatemala while carrying out research supported in part by U.S. Public 
Health Service Research Grant AI-6248 from National Institute of Allergy and Infectious 
Diseases and in part by Research Contract DA-49-193-MD-2295 from the U.S. Army 
Medical Research and Development Command. 

References : 

Bonaparte, C. L. J. L. 1837. [Birds collected by Colonel Valasquez de Leon during a fort- 
night's scientific tour in Guatemala.] Proc. Zoo/. Soc. Lond: 1 1 4-1 19. 

Griscom, L. 1930. Studies from the Dwight collection of Guatemalan birds. III. Amer. Mus. 
Nat. Hist. Nov it. 438 : 1-18. 

Griscom, L. 1932. The distribution of bird-life in Guatemala. Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 64: 

I- 439- 
Hellmayr, C. E. 1938. Catalogue of birds of the Americas and adjacent islands. Vol. 2. 

Zool. Series, Field Mus. Nat. Hist. 430, no. 13. 
Miller, W. De W. & Griscom, L. 1925. Notes on Central American birds, with descriptions 

of new forms. Amer. Mus. Nov it. 183:3. 
Monroe, B. L. Jr. 1968. Three new subspecies of birds from Honduras. Occ. Pap. La. State 

Univ. Mus. of Zool. 26: 1-7. 
Phillips, A. R. 1966. Further systematic notes on Mexican birds. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 86: 

Squier, E. G. 1858. The States of Central America. New York : Harper Bros, 
van Tyne, J. & Trautman, M. B. 1941. New birds from Yucatan. Occ. Pap. Univ. Mich. Mus. 

Zool. 439: 1— 11. 
Wagstafle, R. 1978. Type specimens of Birds in the Merseyside County Museums (formerly City of 

Liverpool Museums). Liverpool : Merseyside County Museums. 

Address: Dr. R. W. Dickerman, Dept. of Microbiology, Cornell University Medical 
College, 1300 York Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10021, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

A newly described species of Melignomon (Indicatoridae) 
from Liberia, West Africa 

by P. R. Colston 

Received 7 October ipSo 

This is the second publication (see Forbes-Watson 1970) on the ornithological 
results of the survey initiated by the IUCN Nimba Research Committee on 
the ecology of the Nimba area in Liberia, West Africa. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 


Eleven specimens of a new honey guide* were collected by A. D. Forbes- 
Watson and other members of the Nimba Research Laboratory between 
1965 and 1974. They form part of a large collection of skins presented to the 
B.M.N.H. by the IUCN which are the subject of a major report (Colston, in 
press). Their measurements are given in Table 1. 

Table i 
Measurements of M. eisentrauti and M. ^enkeri (mm and gm). 

M. eisentrauti {G 

33,5 ??) 

M. zeftkeri(z 33,1 ? ?) 







(mean 83.2) 








(mean 80) 

















(mean 80.6) 







(mean 73.3) 











Description. Similar to M. ^enkeri but larger (see Table 1) and with brighter 
more olive-yellow upperparts, much paler, greyer underparts, and con- 
siderably more white on the outer tail feathers, which are also broader and 
less graduated in length. The head is olive-green, merging into a brighter 
olive-yellow on the back and rump (dusky olivaceous, merging into olive- 
brown on the back in %enkeri) ; the wings are washed with brighter yellowish- 
green (olive-brown with duller green edgings in %enkeri) ; and the underparts 
are pale grey with a faint green wash across the upper breast, becoming 
whiter towards the lower belly and undertail coverts (olive brown and paler 
on the belly in ^enkeri). The primaries and 2 central pairs of tail feathers are 
black (brownish in t^enkeri), and the underwing coverts are pale greyish- white 
(olivaceous-yellow in ^enkeri). The bill is small and pointed as in ^enkeri, but 
is distinctly paler, yellowish-brown (blackish in ^enkeri). The legs are pale 
yellow (dull greenish-yellow in ^enkeri). M. eisentrauti is a much brighter 
bird above but greyer below than ^enkeri. 

Annual Cycle (from collectors' labels and skins). None of the birds was 
considered to be in breeding condition. Sep and Nov <$$ were slightly worn 
and June and Aug $$ were in fresh plumage. An Oct $ was in worn con- 
dition and the remaining $$ were mostly in fresh plumage. 

Food. Recorded as insects, yellow wax (or pollen ?), small fruits and some 

Differences between young M. eisentrauti and M. zenkeri. In addition to the 1 1 
specimens from Mt. Nimba, there is a single specimen in the B.M.N.H. 
collection from Cameroun. It was collected by Dr. W. Serle in secondary 
forest at Bakebe and previously thought by Serle to be an immature specimen 
of M. ^enkeri (Serle 1959: 65). The bird is a £ in fresh plumage and does not 

*A copy of this paper, proposing a new name, was sent to Dr. M. Louette in October 1980, 
shortly after it had been submitted for publication. Dr. Louette has since seen fit to describe 
the new honeyguide without informing us of his intention (Louette 198 1, a new species of 
honeyguide from West Africa, Rev. Zoo/. Afr. 95: 1 31-13 5 — Melignomon eisentrauti). His 
paper came to hand while this one was in proof and it has been possible to do little more 
than delete the proposed name and substitute eisentrauti for it in the text and table. 

291 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

appear to differ significantly from Nimba adult specimens of eisentrauti. Its 
gonads were recorded as small. The skull was partially pneumatised and it was 
probably a bird of the year. Its legs were noted as orange-yellow. The bill 
was also orange-yellow with some brownish areas. The wing measures 76 mm, 
tail 45 mm and bill 12 mm. 

Six B.M.N.H. specimens of %enkeri include a juv $ recently fledged, 
collected by G. L. Bates on 22 March 1906 at Bitye on the River Ja in the 
Camerouns (B.M.N.H. No. 191 1.5.3 1. 137). ^ ts bill was only partially formed 
and the tail half grown. The plumage is dark greenish above and considerably 
duskier greyish-green below. Serle remarks that he examined the short series 
of adult ^enkeri obtained by Bates now in the B.M.N.H. However, he failed 
to note the significance of the juvenile in that collection. Had he done so he 
would have realised that his own much brighter yellow-green (? imm) 
specimen from Cameroun did not fit the plumage sequence of %enkeri. The 
tail pattern of the juv yenkeri is identical to that of the adult and quite 
different from that of eisentrauti. Dr. Serle himself remarked on this difference: 
"The amount of white on the four outer pairs of rectrices is much greater. 
The outermost pair are white tipped light brown, the brown tip extending 
1 5 mm along the outer web and 4 mm along the inner web ; the next pair are 
white narrowly edged with brown to 1 2 mm from the tip along the outer web 
only; the next pair are entirely white". 

Remarks. The genus Melignomon was long thought to consist of a single 
species, M. %enkeri. With the discovery of eisentrauti, a species apparently en- 
demic to the Upper Guinea forest, and as far as is known, allopatric with ^enkeri 
(see Snow (1978), map 374), it seems probable that the genus consists of 2 
species in a single super-species. M. ^enkeri is found from the southern 
Camerouns to the northern part of the Congo forest east to Semliki. It seems 
likely eisentrauti will be found in other areas of the Upper Guinea forest. 

References : 

Forbes-Watson, A. D. 1970. A new species of Melaenornis (Muscicapinae) from Liberia. 

Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 90: 145-148. 
Serle, W. 1959. Note on the immature plumage of the Honey-guide Melignomon %enkeri 

Reichenovs. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 79:65. 
Snow, D. W. (Ed.) 1978. An Atlas of Speciation in African Non-passerine Birds. Brit. Mus. 

Nat. Hist. : London. 
White, C. M. N. 1965. A Revised Check-list of African Non-passerine Birds. Government 

Printer : Lusaka. 

Address: P. R. Colston, Sub-department of Ornithology, British Museum (Natural History), 
Tring, Hertfordshire, England. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

A House x Somali Sparrow 
Passer domesiicus x P. castanopterus hybrid 

by J. S. Ash & P. R. Colston 

Received 18 August 1980 

A bird resembling a £ House Sparrow Passer domesticus was found by J.S.A. 
consorting with a small colony of Somali Sparrows P. castanopterus on 
6 March 1980 in a sea-cave at Hal Hambo (oi°54'N, 45°c>5'E), 31 km south- 
west of Mogadishu, Somalia. As there were problems concerning its 
identification it was collected the following day, and identified at the British 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(2)] 292 

Museum of Natural History, Tring, by P.R.C. and Derek Goodwin as a 
hybrid between these 2 species. 


At first the bird was thought to be P. domesticus, as it was clearly very 
different from the dozen or so P. castanopterus present; but closer observation 
showed that it possessed several puzzling features — notably a poorly defined 
white wing bar, no white supercilium — merely a pale patch near the base of 
the bill, and a creamy-yellowish wash on the whitish cheek patches and down 
the centre of the greyish underparts. From the limited literature available in 
Somalia it was tentatively identified as P. d. indicus, with the possibility, 
however, that it might be a hybrid. Its grey crown and rump ruled out all 
races of the Rufous Sparrow P. iagoensis, except for insularis and hemileucus, and 
these 2 Socotran forms were excluded because they both show a dark line 
over the ear coverts — a character found throughout the range of P. iagoensis. 


The hybrid. The specimen was compared with long series of Passer spp. in the 
British Museum collection, together with a typical £ P. c. castanopterus 
collected on 26 June 1979 from the same site as the specimen under review. 
It was confidently identified beyond reasonable doubt as a P. domesticus x 
castanopterus hybrid, for the following reasons: basically it is P. domesticus 
sharing features of P. castanopterus, notably the yellowish cheeks ; some of the 
black feathers on the mantle have whiter edges than in P. domesticus and are 
more akin to features shown by castanopterus-, the normal conspicuous white 
wing bar of a $ domesticus is reduced to a narrow white line in the hybrid 
{castanopterus lacks a white wing bar) ; the rest of the plumage and the size of 
the specimen agrees with P. domesticus. 

Description of hybrid. The whole of the top of the head from base of bill, 
grey; a small pale patch (reduced supercilium) near the base of the bill; a 
narrow chestnut band extending from just in front of and above the eye, 
over the ear coverts and round the nape; rest of the upperparts with near- 
black and whitish streaks on a greyish ground colour; rump grey; a black 
bib, scaly below; near white cheek patches washed with pale yellow; rest of 
underparts grey, but with pale yellow down the centre ; wings chestnut with 
black streaks on coverts, and a single rather poorly defined whitish wing bar; 
bill black; tarsi yellowish-brown; wing-length 73 mm; weight 23.7 g; testes 
partly developed (8 mm). Registration Number: 1 979-1 1-2. 

The local £ P. castanopterus obtained the same day is the eastern, nominate 
form P. c. castanopterus, and is typical in all respects. Wing-length 70 mm; 
weight 1 7. 8 g ; testes partly developed (2 mm). Registration Number : 1 979- 1 1 - 1 . 


The origin of such a specimen clearly must be from somewhere within the 
present range of P. castanopterus, so that a review of the knowledge of this 
species' distribution in East Africa, and also that of P. domesticus, is necessary. 

Distribution of P. castanopterus. The species' range is confined to the horn 
of Africa. The eastern, nominate race is common and widespread throughout 
Somalia and southeastern Ethiopia between z° and I2°N and east of 41 °E. 
It is the town sparrow of this region, but also has a rural distribution, and is 
particularly associated with the coast in eastern Somalia. The small colony 
at Hal Hambo found by J.S.A. is 167 km southwest of the nearest known 

293 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

P. castanopterus colony, at Demodo (o2°4o'N, 46°i4'E), and 206 km southeast 
of another fringe colony, at Baidoa(o3°o7'N, 42°38'E). 

A western population, separated as P. c. fulgens, occurs in southwest 
Ethiopia in the Lakes Stephanie and Rudolf area and extends into northern 
Kenya. We can find no evidence to support the statements in Mackworth- 
Praed & Grant (i960) that it occurs in south central Ethiopia, nor that it is 
found in south Ethiopia (Urban & Brown 1971). The latter authors' reference 
to southeast Ethiopia should refer to the nominate form. 

Distribution of P. domesticus. The House Sparrow is virtually unknown in 
Somalia and adjoining Ethiopia and Kenya. The reference in Mackworth- 
Praed & Grant (i960) to P. d. niloticus at Berbera (io°26'N, 45°o2'E), "where 
it was probably introduced", presumably refers to the adult <§ specimen 
{niloticus) in the British Museum collected by Dr. R. E. Drake-Brockman at 
Berbera on 9 April 1905 (Registration Number: 1905 -6-1-9). However, we 
are unable to trace any report of this species in the literature from this 
locality, or from anywhere else in Somalia, and in particular it is not alluded 
to in Hall & Moreau (1970), White (1963) or Archer & Godman(i96i). 

For Kenya, Mackworth-Praed & Grant state that the House Sparrow 
P. d. indicus "probably now occurs at Mombasa". P. L. Britton (in iitt. 
19.4.80) has very kindly provided a detailed review of the present situation 
at Mombasa, which appears to be the only Kenya locality for P. domesticus. 
Following the discovery by him of a pair in April 1979, subsequent investi- 
gations by several observers revealed a small thriving breeding population; 
but all the indications were that this seemed to be a fresh introduction 
(probably by accident from a ship or ships), and that there was no previous 
evidence that it had ever become established on the East African mainland. 

There are no records from Ethiopia. 

Conclusion. The present hybrid can only have been bred within the range 
of P. castanopterus. It is unlikely that the P. domesticus parent involved 
originated from Mombasa, well outside the range of P. castanopterus, especially 
as all the birds in the small colony at Hal Hambo appear to be typical 
castanopterus. Berbera, as another possible source, and within the range of 
P. castanopterus ■, is over 1000 km away and there is no evidence that P. 
domesticus is there now. We must conclude therefore that the hybrid has 
arisen from a pairing between these two Passer species at an undiscovered 
site in Somalia, probably not too far distant from Hal Hambo, almost 
certainly involving a House Sparrow which arrived by a ship-assisted 
passage within the range of the Somali Sparrow. 

To the best of our knowledge this is the only known occurrence of a 
Passer domesticus x castanopterus hybrid. Hybrid P. domesticus x montanus are 
not uncommon (Rooke 1957, Richardson 1957). 

Acknowledgements: We thank Derek Goodwin for his help in the identification of 
specimens, and Peter Britton for his valuable notes on the status of Passer domesticus in 

References : 

Archer, G. & Godman, E. M. 1961. Birds of British Somaliland and the Gulf of Aden. Oliver & 

Boyd : Edinburgh & London. 
Hall, B. P. & Moreau, R. E. 1970. An Atlas of Speciation in African Passerine Birds. British 

Museum (Natural History) : London. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 19S1: 101(2)] 294 

Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. i960. African Handbook of Birds of Eastern and 

North Eastern Africa. Longmans Green: London. 
Richardson, R. A. 1957. Hybrid Tree x House Sparrow in Norfolk. Brit. Birds 50: 80-81. 
Rooke, K. B. 1957. Hybrid Tree x House Sparrow in Dorset. Brit. Birds 50: 79-80. 
Urban, E. K. & Brown, L. H. 1971. A Checklist of the Birds of Ethiopia. Haile Sellassie I 

University : Addis Ababa. 
White, C. M. N. 1963. A Revised Check List of African Flycatchers, etc. Government Printer: 


Addresses: Dr. J. S. Ash, Division of Birds, National Museum of Natural History, 
Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. 20560, U.S.A. 

P. R. Colston, British Museum (Natural History), Sub-Department of Ornithology, 
Tring, Hertfordshire, HP23 6AP, England. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 

New subspecies of Pipreola riefferii and 
Chlorospingus ophthalmicus from Peru 

by John P. O'Neill & Theodore A. Parker III 

Received 2j September ipSo 

Studies in Peru by members of the Louisiana State University Museum of 
Zoology and their associates have turned up a rather astounding number of 
new forms of birds. Series of the cotinga Pipreola riefferii from the Carpish 
and Sira Mountains of central Peru are quite distinct and we propose to call 

Pipreola riefferii tallmanorum subsp. nov. 

Type: Adult male, collected on 5 August 1973 by Erika J. Tallman on the 
trail to Hacienda Paty below (NE) Carpish Pass, Department of Huanuco, 
Peru, elevation c. 2200 m, No. 74145, Louisiana State University Museum of 
Zoology. (Dan A. Tallman original number 1734.) 

Description: The male differs from males of all other subspecies in its 
combination of small size, shiny black head and throat and nearly unmarked 
lemon yellow lower breast and belly. Females differ from females of all other 
subspecies in their small size, the slightly darker (more bluish) green upper- 
parts, and the slightly more golden yellow of the underparts. 

Measurement of type {mm): Wing (chord) 85.2, tail 68.6, tarsus 19.5, culmen 
from base 13.9. 

Range: So far as known, the upper Subtropical and lower Temperate Zones 
of the eastern slope of the Cordillera Carpish and the Subtropical Zone of 
the Cerros de Sira, both in the Department of Huanuco, central Peru. 

Specimens examined: Pipreola r. riefferii (7). Colombia: "Bogota," 1 g subad. 
(AMNH); "Columbia," 2 ^(AMNH); Subia, 1 6* (AMNH); El Roble, 1 ? 
(AMNH) ; parte alta de Fusugasuga, 1 $ (AMNH) ; El Eden, 1 6* (AMNH). 

P. r. occidentalism) . Colombia: Ricaurte, 1 5* (LSUMZ); Cerro Munchique, 
2 ?$ (LSUMZ) : Moscopan, 1 6* (LSUMZ). 

P. r. chachapoyas (incl. confusa) (33). Peru: ridge E (above) San Jose de 
Lourdes, 2 JJ, 2 $$ (LSUMZ); 20 trail km E La Peca, 4 #$, 1 $( = £?), 
2 $$ (LSUMZ); 12 trail km E La Peca, 1 $ (LSUMZ); Cordillera Colan, 
1 $ (LSUMZ); 33 rd. km NE Ingenio, 2 $$ (LSUMZ); 10 rd. km NE 
Abra Patricia, 4^,3 $$ (LSUMZ): Chachapoyas, 1 6* (AMNH); La Lejia, 
1 6*> 1 $ (AMNH); San Pedro, 2 <J<J, 1 ? (AMNH); Cumpang, 5 $$ 

295 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

P. r. tallmanorum (23). Peru: Cerros del Sira, 6 £$, 5 $$ (AMNH); trail to 
Hda. Paty, 8 <?& 4 ?$(LSUMZ). 

Remarks: We take great pleasure in naming this new form for Dan A. and 
Erika J. Tallman whose studies of Carpish birds have added much to the 
knowledge of Peru's avifauna. 

The new form is most like P. r. riefferii of Colombia and Venezuela in 
having the underparts lightly marked, but the 2 are quite different in size 
(5 male P. r. riefferii have an average wing length of 90.9 mm and a tail of 
72.2 mm, while 14 male P. r. tallmanorum have wing and tail averages of 
84.0 mm and 68.6 mm respectively). 

P. r. tallmanorum is quite distinct from its nearest relative to the north, 
P. r. chachapoyas. There are no Pipreola specimens known from the area 
between eastern La Libertad and central Huanuco, but the populations from 
these 2 areas are different enough from each other for us strongly to suspect 
that their ranges are not continuous. Indeed, the differences are such that 
detailed field studies could prove it to merit specific status. 

In examining all known forms of Pipreola riefferii we came to the conclusion 
that the relationship between P. r. chachapoyas and P. r. confusa is indeed most 
confusing. Among 27 recently collected specimens of both sexes from within 
the range of P. r. confusa south into the range of P. r. chachapoyas, the 
differences between the 2 are obscure. Birds from southern Ecuador and 
northern Peru (south-central Amazonas, northern San Martin) are heavily 
marked below and all have the black of the upper breast washed with mossy 
green. Birds from the mountains east of the Rio Chiriaco in northern San 
Martin are the most heavily marked, but just west of there in the mountains 
on the other side of the Rio Chiriaco in south-central Amazonas the birds are 
fairly typical of P. r. chachapoyas. These Amazonas birds are, in general, 
slightly more heavily marked than birds in the paratypic series from nearer to 
the city of Chachapoyas. In a series from the Cordillera Colan, on the south 
side of the Rio Maranon in central Amazonas (5 34' S, 7 8° 19' W), there is 
enough variation for us to be able to pick out males typical of both P. r. 
confusa and P. r. chachapoyas. Actually, specimens in the series collected near 
the town of Chachapoyas are the least marked of all north Peruvian birds, 
but as noted above they can be matched by birds from the Cordillera Colan. 
With the lack of differences between the 2 forms, we consider that birds from 
eastern Ecuador south at least to eastern La Libertad in Peru should all be 
considered under a single name, P. r. chachapoyas. 

P. r. tallmanorum is uncommon in the Carpish Mountains; it was noted 
daily in small numbers between 2130 m and 2280 m, usually in pairs or 
groups of 3-4 individuals, almost always in fruiting trees of the family 
Melastomataceae. The song, given by both sexes, consists of several soft, 
high-pitched notes followed by a very thin, high-pitched "seeee"; this 
series of notes may be written "ti-ti-ti-seeee" and is quite like that of P. r. 
chachapoyas, both north and south of the Rio Maranon, as well as reminiscent 
of vocalizations of P. intermedia. The latter species was also found to occur 
in the Carpish region, and it narrowly overlaps with P. riefferii there, but 
seems to be more prevalent at higher elevations (2280 m to 2430 m). 

Snow (1973) questioned the sympatry of P. riefferii and P. intermedia in the 
Department of La Libertad. In 1979, LSUMZ personnel found these 2 
species together there, occasionally feeding in the same fruiting melastomes, 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 296 

at Cumpang, between 2280 m and 2430 m. We now know that the 2 occur 
together at least in La Libertad and Huanuco in the Eastern Cordillera of 
central Peru. Pipreola arcuata and P. pulchra also inhabit the cloud forests of 
the Carpish Mountains, occurring mainly higher and lower, respectively, 
than P. riefferii. 

* * * 

In 1947 John T. Zimmer, writing about the bush tanager Chlorospingus 
ophthalmicus, stated that "there is, as stated on an earlier page, a wide hiatus in 
northern Peru where the species has not been found, while phaeocephalus 
[= C. 0. phaeocephalus] of Ecuador appears to remain beyond the Peruvian 
boundary. It is probable that some representative of the species will be 
found in suitable terrain between the Junin region and the Ecuadorian 
frontier, but it has yet to be discovered. Considering the quantity of material 
that has been assembled at various times by different workers in the region it 
is surprising that a member of the group has not been discovered to date". 

We too find it surprising that no specimen of C. ophthalmicus was collected 
in northern Peru until 1968, as the species seems to be as common there as 
it is elsewhere in Peru. We have 26 specimens from the Departments 
of Amazonas, La Libertad, San Martin, and Huanuco. This previous lack 
of material serves to further highlight the general paucity of detailed 
ornithological investigations at higher elevations on the eastern slopes of 
the Peruvian Andes. The 23 specimens from northern Peru, south of the Rio 
Marafion, are recognizably different and we propose should be known as 

Chlorospingus ophthalmicus hiaticolus subsp. nov. 

Type: Adult male, collected on 24 August 1976 by John P. O'Neill, 10 km 
(by road) below (NE) Abra Patricia on the road to Rioja, Departamento de 
San Martin, Peru, elevation c. 1890 m, No. 82222, Louisiana State University 
Museum of Zoology. (John P. O'Neill original number 5657.) 

Description: Most like C. 0. peruvianus of southern Peru, but differing from 
that form by averaging slightly larger and by having the yellow breast band 
duller (slightly greener). There is also a tendency for most specimens to have 
less dark speckling on the throat, whiter bellies, and a less pronounced dark 
ear patch than is present in C. 0. peruvianus. Also somewhat like C. 0. 
phaeocephalus of Ecuador and extreme northern Peru (6 recently collected, 
see specimens examined), but overall brighter, with paler, less speckled 
throat, whiter belly, and yellower (less olive) pectoral band. 

Measurements of type {mm): Wing (chord) 72.9, tail 56.9, tarsus 23.0, culmen 
from base 14.9. 

Range: So far as known, the upper Subtropical and lower Temperate 
Zones of the eastern Andes in the Departments of Amazonas (Cordillera 
Colan northeast of Bagua Chica), San Martin (mountains west of Rioja), La 
Libertad (Cumpang, on Tayabamba-Ongon trail), and Huanuco (Cordillera 
Carpish, northeast of Huanuco city), but probably occurring in suitable 
habitat from the Cordillera Colan in Amazonas south at least to the north 
side of the canyon of the Rio Huallaga in Huanuco. 

Specimens examined: Chlorospingus semifuscus (9). Colombia: Ricaurte, 2 $? 
(LSUMZ); Ricaurte, 1 ?, 1 6* imm. (FMNH); Cerro Munchique, 2 &J, 3 $? 

C. 0. phaeocephalus (5). Ecuador: El Chiral, 1 <£, 2 $? (AMNH); Sumaco 


[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

arriba, ^(AMNH). Peru: Playon, 1 sex? (LSUMZ); Sapalache-Carmen trail, 
5 ?? (LSUMZ). 

C. 0. hiaticolus (26). Peru: 20 trail km E La Peca, 5 §$ (LSUMZ); 10 km 
NE Abra Patricia, 3 <J<J, 2 ??, 1 sex ? (LSUMZ); Cumpang, 3 <?£, 5 ??, 
1 sex? (LSUMZ); Paty Trail, 2 $$ (LSUMZ); E slope Cordillera Carpish [ = 
Paty Trail], 2 <}<?, 2 ?? (LSUMZ). 

C. 0. cinereocephalus (n). Peru: Cerros del Sira, 4 <$$, 4 <j>£ (AMNH); 
Chelpes, 1 <J, 1 $(AMNH); EsteraRuana, 1 6* (LSUMZ). 

C. 0. peruvianas (16). Peru: Hda. Cadena, 1 $, 1 $(FMNH); La Oroya, 2 $$ 
(ANSP); Oconeque, 1 6*, 1 $ (ANSP) ; Bosque Aputinye, 1 6\ 1 $ (LSUMZ); 
Santo Domingo (Inca Mine), 1 $ (ANSP) ; 5 km NE San Jose on Rio Huari 
Huari, 1 $ (LSUMZ). 

Kemarks: The fact that the new form was not discovered until 1968 is most 
surprising. We can only surmise that earlier workers did not spend time at 
the elevations where Chlorospingus ophthalmicus occurs. We have named the 
new form hiaticolus, meaning "gap inhabitor," to highlight the fact that the 
apparent hiatus in the range of the species is not real. 

C. 0. hiaticolus is common throughout its known range, and is frequently 
noted in mixed-species flocks of other tanagers and honeycreepers that move 
from fruiting tree to tree in primary forest and in advanced second growth 
at the forest edge. These bush-tanagers also search for insects on leaves, and 
in epiphytic growth on branches in the forest canopy and subcanopy. Males 
establish territories at the forest edge and in forest openings (i.e. treefalls), 
where they sing from inconspicuous perches 10-20 m above ground. The 
primary song (see Fig. 1) consists of an accelerating series of chip notes 
followed by a harsh trill, and has been recorded from June to October, but 
the species may sing throughout the year. This bush-tanager is most vocal 
after dawn and late in the afternoon. 



— 1 r 

time in seconds 

\ \- \ 

' I 



Fig. 1 . Sonograms of a portion of the songs of Chlorospingus ophthalmicus hiaticolus (upper) 
from near Abra Patricia, San Martin, Peru, and C. 0. cinereocephalus (lower) from the Cerros 
del Sira, Huanuco, Peru. Both sonograms include only the last few notes of the series of 
chips, but show all notes in the trill. 

We wanted to compare the voices of the various forms of C. ophthalmicus 
occurring in Peru, but the only tape-recordings available are those of C 0. 
hiaticolus and C. 0. cinereocephalus. Fig. 1 shows that the introductory chip 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 298 

notes of the 2 forms are fairly similar, but the terminal trills (of at least these 
individuals) are quite different in rate, frequency and fine structure of the 
notes. Additionally, C. 0. hiatkolus has a high-pitched component in its song 
that is apparently lacking in the song of C. 0. cinereocephalus. Despite these 
differences, we feel that before a decision can be made about their specific 
status, more tape-recordings of and playback experimentation with these and 
the forms C. 0. phaeocephalus, C. 0. peruvianus and C. semifuscus are needed. 

The new form is somewhat puzzling morphologically in that it does not 
drastically differ from C. 0. peruvianus of southern Peru. However, the 
populations of the races to the north and south of it, C. 0. phaeocephalus and 
C. 0. cinereocephalus respectively, are distinctly different. C. 0. cinereocephalus, 
which separates hiatkolus from peruvianus, is drastically different, having the 
yellow portion of its pattern replaced by pale buff. It is also the largest of the 
Peruvian races, especially in wing length (see Table 1). If C. 0. hiatkolus were 
in contact with C. 0. peruvianus, we would probably merge the 2 under one 

Table i 
Selected measurements (mm) of the four Peruvian races of Chlorospingus ophthalmicus 


males females males females males females 

C. 0. phaeocephalus 



n=2 n=2 





56.3-59.3 47-7"5 2 - 8 

(57-8) (50.3) 

C. 0. hiaticolus 





n=i2 n=9 





55.3-63.0 54-9-59-1 
(60.0) (56.7) 
C. 0. cinereocephalus 

13. 5-15. 2 



n = 7 


n=6 n=4 




(6 7 -5) 

60.0-64.0 55.5-60.0 
(62.1) (58.1) 

C. 0. peruvianus 


(1 4-4) 




n=5 n=5 





56.5-60.0 53.0-60.9 
(59.0) (57.0) 

13. 8-14.8 

12. 8-14.6 

name, but since the 2 are separated by a distinctly different form, and are 
separable on morphological criteria, we feel that the north-Peruvian bird 
should be distinguished by name*. C. 0. phaeocephalus, recently collected in 
Peru from the mountains east of Huancabamba, is apparently totally 
separated from the new form by the arid Maranon valley. There is no indica- 
tion that gene flow presently takes place between any of the 4 Peruvian 

The specific status of C. 0. cinereocephalus has always been questionable. It 
was originally described as a separate species, but was later made a subspecies 
of C. semifuscus (Hellmayr 1936), which it resembles in having the yellow 
ventral markings replaced by buff. It is, however, now again considered to 
be a subspecies of C. ophthalmicus. 

* A series of 20 specimens of C. 0. peruvianus collected in the Department of Puno, Peru 
by LSUMZ personnel after this paper went to press, show the colour differences between 
peruvianus and hiaticolus to be even more obvious than previously ascertained. 

299 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

We attempted to gather data to determine the relationships of C. 0. 
cinereocephalus to C. semifuscus and of both of them to the rest of the C. 
ophthalmicus complex, but not enough information exists to do so. We 
predict that C. semifuscus will be found to be restricted to the western Andes 
of Colombia and Ecuador and that in Ecuador it will be actually found only 
on the western slopes. The only place that C. semifuscus and C. ophthalmicus 
have been collected together is Gualea, on the west slope of the Western 
Andes in Ecuador, but there is some doubt as to the actual site where the 
C. ophthalmicus specimen was collected (Zimmer 1947). 

Acknowledgements: John S. Mcllhenny, Babette M. Odom, H. Irving Schweppe, Laura R. 
Schweppe and E. W. Mudge have all been unfailing in their support of the LSUMZ field 
programmes. The Peruvian Direcci6n General Forestal y de Fauna of the Ministerio de 
Agricultura authorized our work. We thank John W. Fitzpatrick of the Field Museum of 
Natural History (FMNH) and Wesley E. Lanyon of the American Museum of Natural 
History (AMNH) for the loan of comparative material. O'Neill and Parker gratefully 
acknowledge grants in 1975 and 1979 respectively from the Chapman Memorial Fund of 
the AMNH. John S. Weske, who collected the series of P. riefferii tallmanorum from the 
Cerros del Sira in Peru, also generously supplied a tape recording of Chlorospingus ophthalmicus 
cinereocephalus , also from the Sira. 

References : 

Hellmayr, C. E. 1936. Catalogue of the birds of the Americas and the adjacent islands. 
Zoological Series, Field Museum Nat. Hist. 13:45 8pp. 

Snow, D. W. 1973. The classification of the Cotingidae (Aves). Brevoria 409 : 1-27. 

Zimmer, J. T. 1947. Studies of Peruvian birds No. 52, the genera Sericossypha, Chloro- 
spingus, Cnemoscopus, Hemispingus, Conothraupis, Chlorornis, Lamprospiza, 
Cissopis, and Schistochlamys. American Mus. Novitates 1367: 1-26. 

Address: Dr. J. P. O'Neill and T. A. Parker III, Museum of Zoology, Louisiana State 
University, Baton Rouge LA 70893, USA. 

© British Ornithologists' Club. 

The morphology of Sardinian Warblers 
Sylvia melanocephala and Blackcaps S. atricapilla resident 

on Gibraltar 

by J. C. F inlay son 

Received 18 August 1980 

The Sardinian Warbler Sylvia melanocephala and the Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla 
are the main resident foliage-gleaning insectivores at Gibraltar. The Sardin- 
ian Warbler is common within its essentially circum-Mediterranean 
range (Vaurie 1959, Voous i960), and is associated typically with Mediter- 
ranean scrub. The Blackcap is widespread in the Palaearctic, and is mostly 
associated with mature woodland rather than with maquis, even within the 
Mediterranean region (Cody & Walter 1976). At Gibraltar, the 2 species 
occupy maquis vegetation and are often in close contact. 

During 1 973-1 979 Sardinian Warblers and Blackcaps were mist-netted in 
a 2-ha site in the maquis at Gibraltar. At least 10 visits were made to the site 
most months. Retraps were frequent at all times of year and this established 
that Sardinian Warblers were resident and that 2 Blackcap populations were 
involved, a resident one and a migratory one. Ringing recoveries suggest 

[Bull.B.O.C. 19S1: 101(2)] 300 

that these migratory Blackcaps originate from Western Europe north of the 


Sardinian Warbler Sylvia melanocephala 

Williamson (1974) recognizes 4 sub-species of S. melanocephala. The 
nominate S. m. melanocephala occurs on the mainland of Mediterranean 
Europe and in North Africa. It is also found in the Balearic Islands, Corsica, 
Sardinia, Malta and Sicily. In the Middle East it is replaced by S. m. momus. 
The other 2 sub-species have very local distributions, S. m. leucogastra, 
considered synonymous with melanocephala by Vaurie (1959), in the Canary 
Islands and S. m. norrisae in Egypt. Vaurie (1959) also accepts S. m. pasiphae 
from Crete and some Greek islands, but it is omitted by Williamson. 

In all aspects, with the important exception of bill length, the Sardinian 
Warblers which are resident on Gibraltar fall within the range of measure- 
ments of S. m. melanocephala (Table 1) and have similar plumage. They are, 
however, longer-billed (Williamson 1974), a small sample of skins conform- 
ing with Williamson's data, which suggests the difference in bill length is a 
real one. 

Table i 

Measurements (mm) of Sardinian Warblers Sylvia melanocephala trapped at Gibraltar. 
(S.D. = Standard Deviation) 

Mean (N) S.D. Mean (N) S.D. 

Tarsus length 

0.81 Adult <J I 9«3( I 3) I «3 I 

0.70 Adult 9 20.1(10) 1.74 

0.77 Juvenile 20.5(73) J -68 

Tail length 

1.09 Adult $ 59.4(13)2.62 

0.74 Adult ? 56.3(8) 3.16 

1.68 Juvenile 57.1(71)2.68 

Bill, tarsus and tail measured with calipers to the nearest 0.1 mm. Wing measured with 
ruler to nearest mm (flattened measurement). P> 0.05 in all cases. 

Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla 

Throughout the whole of the Palaearctic mainland the Blackcap is 
divided into 2 sub-species, the nominate S. a. atricapilla in the west, and S. a. 
dammhol^i in the east (Vaurie 1959). Several sub-species have also been 
described from islands. Vaurie (1959) recognizes S. a. paulucci in Sardinia 
and S. a. heineken from Madeira (Williamson (1974) adds the Canary Islands). 
Williamson recognizes the form S. a. koenigi from the Balearic Islands 
and also S. a. atlantis from the Azores and Cape Verde Islands. In general, 
the island forms appear darker than those of the mainland and some have 
shorter wings. In all island forms, the position of the tip of the second 
primary lies between the tips of primaries 6 and 7, or even between 7 and 8. 
In the nominate race this is rare, the tip of the second primary usually being 
in line with the tips of primaries 5 and 6 (Williamson 1974 and pers. obs.). 

In Europe there is some evidence of a cline in some characters from west 
to east (Vaurie 1959), but in a series of skins examined at the British Museum 
(Natural History) I have not found any indication of grading of characters 
between northern and southern Europe. Nevertheless, the resident Blackcap 
at Gibraltar differs recognisably from the more northern nominate sub- 
species in several characters. Since migrant nominate birds are present at 

Bill length 
Adult <j 
Adult 9 


Wing length 
Adult <5 
Adult 9 


301 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

Gibraltar alongside local birds from September to May, a comparative 
morphological analysis was possible using data gathered by a single observer. 

Birds exhibiting the characteristics of local Blackcaps were ringed and 
retrapped at all times of year. During the breeding season (April-July) adults 
showing these characteristics were recorded nesting in the maquis and 
trapped birds had brood patches. Birds with characteristics of nominate 
birds were only trapped between September (a few) and May. They were 
never recorded breeding on Gibraltar. Some of these birds were trapped 
in subsequent winters. 

The local Gibraltar form is smaller than the nominate and weighs less. 
Weights of 30 local Blackcaps trapped in mid- winter (all during the morning) 
were significantly lower than those of 30 nominate birds trapped under the 
same conditions (Table 2). 

Table 2 

Morphological differences between local and nominate Blackcaps Sylvia atricapilla trapped 

at Gibraltar. (S.D. = standard deviation). 

Local popu 








of difference 

Bill length (mm) 1 4.0(2 2) 




>o 05 

Wing length (mm) 6 8 . 6( 3 0) 





Tarsus length (mm) 20.1(22) 





Tail length (mm) 59.1(22) 





Weight (g) 17.6(30) 





Tail: Wing ratio 86.15(22) 



Roundness of wing 80.80(23) 





Measurements as Table 1. Weight measured to nearest 0.1 g. 

The wing is shorter in the local Blackcap, but bill and tarsus length are 
similar to the nominate (Table 2). The tail appears to be slightly longer in the 
local form than in the nominate but the difference is not significant. The 
wing relative to weight is shorter in the local Blackcap than in the nominate, 
indicating that the shorter wing is not just due to the bird's smaller overall 
size. The tail: wing-length ratio is higher in the local Blackcap (i.e. the tail 
is longer in relation to the wing), but this may be due to the reduction in 
wing length. 

The index of roundness (as defined by Gaston 1974) shows that the wing 
is more rounded in the local form than in the nominate (Table 2). The wing 
formula of the local Blackcap differs from that of the nominate in several ways. 
The wing point is more frequently the fourth primary in the local Blackcap 
and the third in the nominate sub-species, but this is not exclusive. Primaries 
1, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10, and the first secondary are significantly longer, relative to 
the length of the wing, in the local Blackcap (Table 3). In the local Blackcap 
the position of the tip of the 2nd primary corresponds to that of the island 
forms, lying between the tips of primaries 6 and 7, very rarely between 5 
and 6, which position is the rule in the nominate sub-species. 

In the local form the plumage in general is much darker than in the 
nominate form. The upper parts are a dark olive, which extends to the rump. 
The nape is dark grey, only slightly greyer than the rest of the upper parts 
in the female, but more conspicuous in the male. The crown is jet black in 
the male and reddish-brown in the female. The wings and tail are dark 

[BulLB.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 


brown. The under parts are greyer, less white, than in the nominate. The 
flanks are a uniform dark buffish-olive. The under-tail coverts are like the 
flanks, the throat and breast are grey buffish-olive. The belly is dirty white, 
with a greyish tinge towards the breast. 

Table 3 

Relative lengths of flight feathers (mm, distant from w 
Blackcaps Sylvia atricapilla trapped 

ing point) in local 2 
at Gibraltar. 


I St 

Distance(mm) from 
wing point (N) 


95 %Conl 


























5 th 














7 th 











11. 5-13. 1 











1. 521 








16. 2-17. 6 

Primaries numbered descendantly ; secondaries ascendantly. 

The local Blackcaps also differ from the island sub-species in several ways. 
They are more olive, less grey, on the upper parts than S. a. paulucci. The 
range of wing length given for the latter race is 68-74 mm (Williamson 
1974), some of them therefore having longer wings than the Gibraltar form 
(maximum recorded wing length = 72 mm). Similarly S. a. heineken (70-77 
mm) and S. a. atlantis (69-78 mm) also have longer-winged individuals than 

303 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

the Gibraltar form. Both S. a. heineken and S. a. atlantis have melanistic forms, 
but no such type has been found in Gibraltar. The separation of the Gibraltar 
form from S. a. koenigi is less clear, as this sub-species appears to have been 
identified from only 3 male skins, and comparative quantitative data cannot 
be used to distinguish them. 


The 2 resident Sylvia species on Gibraltar thus differ morphologically from 
other known forms of their own species. The Blackcaps resident on 
Gibraltar have some resemblance to some of the island forms but it is 
unlikely that they share a common ancestor. It is more likely that these 
similarities are due to similar selective pressures acting in the different 
geographical areas. Most of the island forms have shorter, more rounded 
wings than the migratory forms, probably as a result of their sedentary 
existence (Gaston 1974). 

It is not known if the Gibraltar variants of the Sardinian Warbler and the 
Blackcap are restricted to the Rock. The Sardinian Warbler is widespread in 
the area around Gibraltar and there ought to be considerable gene flow 
between populations in the area, preventing the Gibraltar population from 
becoming genetically isolated (note however that of over 800 Sardinian 
Warblers ringed at Gibraltar none has been recovered in Spain or Morocco). 
The Blackcap, on the other hand, is a rare nesting species in the Spanish 
hinterland and along the Moroccan coastline (Professor F. Bernis, Dr C. M. 
Herrera, Mr J. Pineau, pers. comm.), and the Gibraltar population may on 
that account be genetically isolated; at least the chances of this being the 
case must be greater than for the Sardinian Warbler population. Irby (1895) 
commonly found the Blackcap on the Rock, but only a few pairs nested 
there, mainly in gardens ; it may have established a good foothold there only 
recently as a breeding species, though alternatively the few seen by Irby may 
have been remnants of a larger breeding population when Gibraltar was 
wooded (Finlayson 1979). 

It is not possible to be certain of the reasons for the variations described. 
It is likely that the Gibraltar Blackcap has recently invaded the maquis on 
the Rock (Finlayson 1979) and that it has become morphologically adapted 
to this new breeding habitat. A shortening and rounding of the wing, an 
increase in the wing : tail ratio, and a decrease in size, are modifications 
consistent with species colonizing denser and lower vegetation than they 
have previously occupied (Gaston 1974). In this aspect the Blackcap is 
converging significantly with the Sardinian Warbler which is a typical 
maquis inhabitant. The local Sardinian Warbler may not differ from others 
in the neighbourhood of Gibraltar, but if the bill of Gibraltar birds is in fact 
longer, it may be an adaptation to taking a wider range of prey items than 
normal, since the range of breeding Sylvia species on Gibraltar is very small. 
In other words, if the long beak is typical of the Gibraltar population, it 
could have evolved as a form of character release (Grant 1972). 

Acknowledgements: I would like to thank my wife, Geraldine, and John Cortes for helping 
me in the field and for many useful comments on the subject matter of this paper. The 
following kindly read earlier drafts of this paper: Dr. N. B. Davies, Dr. C. M. Perrins, 
Dr. U. Safriel and Dr. D. W. Snow. The British Ornithologists' Union, through the David 
Lack studentship, held at the Edward Grey Institute, Oxford, financed my 3 years work at 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(2)] 304 

References : 

Cody, M. L. & Walter, H. 1976. Habitat selection and inter-specific interactions among 

Mediterranean sylviid warblers. Oikos 27 : 210-238. 
Finlayson, J. C. 1979. The Ecology and Behaviour of Closely Related Species at Gibraltar 

(with special reference to swifts and warblers). D.Phil, thesis, Oxford. 
Gaston, A. 1974. Adaptation in the genus Phylloscopus. Ibis 116: 432-450. 
Grant, P. R. 1972. Convergent and divergent character displacement. Biol. J. Linn. Soc. 4: 

Irby, L. H. 1895. The Ornithology of 'the Straits of "Gibraltar : London: Taylor & Francis. 
Vaurie, C. 1959. The Birds of the Palearctic Fauna. Witherby: London. 
Voous, K. H. i960. Atlas of European Birds. Nelson. 
Williamson, K. 1974. Identification for Ringers. BTO Field Guides, Nos. 7-9 (Genera Cettia, 

Locustella, Acrocephalus, Hippolais, Phylloscopus, Sylvia). 

Address. Dr. J. C. Finlayson, 19 Warspite House, Varyl Begg Estate, Gibraltar. 
©British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 

Three bird species new to Bolivia 

by S. W. Cardiff and J. V. Rem sen > Jr. 

Received 11 September ipSo 

Fieldwork conducted in the Departamento La Paz, Bolivia by the authors 
during summer 1980 produced specimens of 3 bird species not previously 
recorded from the country. 

chamaepetes GOUDOTii Sickle- winged Guan 

On 1 7 June, Cardiff collected 2 of this species, probably a mated pair, in 
humid Temperate zone forest at Cotapata (=Cocapata on some maps), 
4.5 km WNW Chuspipata, alt. 3300 m: — Louisiana State University 
Museum of Zoology (LSUMZ) 95593, (J, testes 7x2.5 mm; 740 g, heavy fat; 
and LSUMZ 95594, $, ovary 17 x 12 mm, largest ovum 4 mm diameter; 
778 g, heavy fat. Both birds had been feeding on hard purple fruit (7 mm 
diameter), several types of seeds (1 mm dia., 4 mm dia., and 4x4x6 mm), 
and pebbles (stomach contents of LSUMZ 95593 deposited in LSUMZ 
Stomach Contents Collection). Cardiff secured another specimen on 21 June 
at the same locality: LSUMZ 95595, §, ovary 20 x 10 mm, largest ovum 
4.5 mm dia., 772 g, heavy fat, stomach full of reddish fruit 4 mm dia., black 
seeds of 1 mm dia., some leaf parts, and pebbles. All birds were observed in 
the top or middle levels of trees 10-13 m in height. These were the only 
definite sightings made of this species during our 28 full days at Cotapata 
(28 May-24 June). The 3 specimens represent a distinct new subspecies to be 
described elsewhere (Cardiff in prep.). 

The Sickle-winged Guan had not been recorded previously south of 
Dpto. Junin, Peru (Meyer de Schauensee 1966, Delacour & Amadon 1973). 
It probably has a continuous distribution in appropriate habitat types from 
Colombia to central Bolivia, but it is easily overlooked due to its secretive 
habits, this possibly accounting for the apparent large gap in the southern 
portion of the range. Although most authors list the Sickle-winged Guan 
as occurring in Temperate as well as Subtropical zone forest (Meyer de 
Schauensee 1966, Delacour & Amadon 1973), the Cotapata records appear 
to be at an unusually high altitude for this species. Intensive fieldwork in the 

305 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 

Subtropical and Temperate zones of Peru by LSUMZ personnel during the 
past 10 years has produced only 10 specimens of C. goudotii. Those with 
altitude data (9) were taken at elevations ranging from 793 to 2100 m (mean 
1483 m). Two LSUMZ specimens from Colombia were taken at 2400 m. 

eutoxeres condamini Buff-tailed Sicklebill 

Four individuals were caught in mist nets in humid Upper Tropical zone 
forest in the Serrania Bellavista, 47 km by road north of Caranavi, altitude 
1350 m: — LSUMZ 95670, 16 July; $, ovary 7x4 mm, largest ovum 1 mm 
dia. ; 9.9 g, heavy fat; LSUMZ 95671, 27 July; $, ovary 4x2 mm, largest 
ovum 1 mm dia.; 9.0 g, light fat; LSUMZ 95672, 28 July; $, ovary 5 x 3 mm, 
largest ovum 1 mm dia.; 9.2 g, moderate fat; and LSUMZ 95673, 31 July; 
o*, testes 2.5 x 2 mm; 11.5 g, heavy fat (all prepared by C. S. Cardiff). The 
stomachs of all 4 specimens contained insect parts. No free-flying individuals 
were observed during the 23 full days (10 July- 2 August) we remained at 
this locality. 

This range extension is not surprising since the species occurs continuously 
from southeastern Colombia to Dpto. Puno, Pero (Meyer de Schauensee 
1966) in Tropical and Upper Tropical zone forest. 

grallaria GUATiMALENSis Scaled Antpitta 

A single singing individual was studied by Remsen and Cardiff and 
subsequently collected by Cardiff at the Serrania Bellavista site (see under 
Eutoxeres condamini) on 25 July: — LSUMZ 96068, $, left testis 6x3 mm; 
skull ossified; 89 g, little fat, stomach full of arthropod parts (stomach 
contents deposited in LSUMZ Stomach Contents Collection). This individual 
was located as it sang repeatedly from one of the few level areas in the 
generally steep terrain. The bird displayed moderate interest towards imita- 
tions of its song. Singing usually took place on slightly elevated perches 
such as dead logs, with one to many songs given before hopping or flying 
to the next song perch. One such flight was estimated to cover 10 m. Another 
individual was heard by Remsen on 27 July at the same locality. 

This species was not previously recorded south of Dpto. Cuzco, Peru 
(Meyer de Schauensee 1966). The presently known distribution is more 
disjunct than those of species such as Eutoxeres condamini (see above), but 
future fieldwork may fill in current gaps. We suspect the species is con- 
tinuously distributed in appropriate habitat from Mexico to central Bolivia 
and has probably been overlooked in certain areas due to its secretive habits 
and limited altitudinal distribution. 

Acknowledgements: We are grateful to Dr. Arturo Castanos, Direccion de Ciencia y 
Tecnologia and to the Academia Nacional de Ciencias for permission to work in Bolivia. 
Prof. Gaston Bejarano and Dr. Jorge Velasco provided invaluable assistance. We are 
grateful to Mrs. Babette Odum, Mr. John S. Mcllhenny, and Mr. and Mrs. H. Irving 
Schweppe for their generous financial support. 

References : 

Delacour, J. & Amadon, D. 1973. Curassows and Related Birds. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist., New 

Meyer de Schauensee, R. 1966. The Species of Birds of South America and their Distribution, 

Nar berth, Pennsylvania: Livingston Press. 

Address: S. W. Cardiff and J. V. Remsen, Jr., Museum of Zoology, Louisiana State 
University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70893, U.S.A. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 

[Bull.B.O.C. jpSi: 101(2)] 306 

Breeding of six Palaearctic birds in southwest Mauritania 

by P. W. P. Browne 

Received 17 August 1980 

While living in Nouakchott during the years 1 978-1 980, I discovered 
evidence of the breeding of the Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus, 
Cream-coloured Courser Cursorius cursor, Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica, 
Hoopoe Lark Alaemon alaudipes, Great Grey Shrike Lam'us excubitor and 
Desert Sparrow Passer simplex in parts of southwest Mauritania where 
breeding has not previously been reported. These species appear to reach 
the southern extremity of their breeding range in or near this area. The 
localities are shown in Figure 1. For comparison, breeding data of other 
authors are given in the inset map Figure 2. 

Charadrius alexandrinus. Kentish Plovers are present the whole year 
in Southern Mauritania and in 1978 maximum numbers were seen in March 
and April (monthly counts not made in other years). On passage, they were 
sometimes seen inland, but in the breeding season only observed on the 
coast near Nouakchott. On 28 May 1978, I found a nest of 3 eggs about 1^ 
km from the ocean (i8°02'N, i6°oo'W) near an excavated saline pool. In 
1979 I saw one chick with 2 adults there on 8 July, and there was a pair of 
adults with 2 fullgrown young on 14 June 1980. On 9 June 1979, 1 saw 2 
chicks with a party of 4-5 adults by another excavated saline pool about \ km 
nearer the ocean. The other nesting location was some 1 8 km further south 
(i7°53'N, i6°o2'W), by a natural saline lake and series of pools just behind 
the dunes, 200-400 m from the ocean. On 14 June 1980, I saw one small 
chick with an adult, 2 chicks almost able to fly with a pair of adults, and 
another pair of adults with 2 fullgrown juveniles. 

It has long been known that C. alexandrinus breeds on the northern coast 
of Mauritania. Bird (1937) reported it at Nouadhibou (c. 2i°N) and Trotig- 
non (1980) on the Banc d'Arguin (c. i9°3o'N). It has recently been dis- 
covered nesting on the coast of Senegal, at c. i4°io / N on 13 July 1970 
(Von Westenhagen in Morel 1972) and at 13°} 5 'N on 19 May 1979 (Prevost 
in Morel 1980). The Nouakchott observations therefore fill a gap in its 
known range, and it is to be expected that there are other undiscovered 
breeding places on the Mauritanian coast. 

Cursorius cursor. During 1978, I thought the Cream-coloured Courser 
was a winter visitor only to southwest Mauritania, for I saw it from January 
to March and not again till August. This impression was reinforced by 
literature covering the region (Heim de Balsac & Mayaud 1962, Mackworth- 
Praed & Grant 1970). However, in 1979, as I widened the area of my 
explorations, I found that the species occurred throughout the summer. 
On 16 June 1979, 12 km northeast of Nouakchott (i8°io'N, i5°54 / W), I 
saw 2 adults with a juvenile not quite as big as themselves, somewhat 
spotted and without grey on the crown. Again, a juvenile as big as the adults 
was seen there on 14 October 1979. On 15 July 1979 at another location 
(i8°2i'N, i5°44'W) I saw a juvenile with adults and yet another (f adult 
size) at i8°o9'N, i5°5 5'W on 29 July 1979. All these juveniles could fly, 
but it should be noted that adults had been seen in these areas for some 
weeks prior to the appearance of the juveniles. 

3 o 7 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 


Figure 1: 

New breeding 










♦" a 

Figure 2 

Previous breeding 



T <fc 


Ma ur ita nia 





Eggs &/or Other breeding Present in 
chicks evidence breeding season 

Kentish Plover 
Cream-coloured Courser 
Gull-billed Tern 
Hoopoe Lark 
Great Grey Shrike 
Desert Sparrow 


■ D ■ 

A A 

▼ V ▼ 

♦ ♦ 

* 6 * 



[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(2)] 308 

In 1980, Cream-coloured Coursers were again persistently seen during 
the spring and summer. On 18 May 1980, in the company of Mr. Bruce 
Heath, I found 2-3 chicks unable to fly, with 2 adults, at i8°io'N, i5°54'W. 
One chick was caught and photographed. On 7 June 1980, halfway between 
Nouakchott and Rosso (on the new road, i7°i2 / N, i6°o5'W), I saw a 
party of 5 adults and 2 fullgrown young. There was a fullgrown juvenile 
with an adult near the coast at i7°5 3 / N, i6°o2'Won 14 June 1980. 

Altogether, during 1979 and 1980, Cream-coloured Coursers were seen at 
23 locations between i7°o4'N and i8°2i'N during the breeding season. 
Juveniles or chicks were found at 6 of these locations. 

This represents a considerable extension southwards of the known breed- 
ing range of this species on the mainland of West Africa. The previous 
furthest south proof of breeding seems to be that obtained by Heim de 
Balsac in Zemmour (around 25°3o'N, n°o4'W) in 1947 (Joe. eit.), c. 850 
km NNE of where proof of breeding was obtained in 1980. However, he 
also reports that Valverde saw flying young in southern Spanish Sahara, 
about 22°N, and the species is resident in the Cape Verde Islands around 
i5°-i7°N (Serle & Morel 1979). Cream-coloured Coursers were previously 
observed in the breeding season as far or even further south than in my 
records, though with no sign of breeding: on 20 April 1947 by Heim de 
Balsac (Joe. eit.) halfway between Nouakchott and Rosso in Mauritania (on 
the old road, i7°i3'N, i6°o4'W) and halfway between Rosso and St. 
Louis in Senegal (i6°i6'N, i6°o6'W); on 30 May i960 by Dr. G. Morel 
(pers. comm.) at El Rhars, Mauritania (i6°46'N, i5°36'W). 

The habitat favoured by these birds in 1 978-1 980 was flat steppe, usually 
without sand dunes, but with frequent low bushes (Maerua erassifolia, Tamarix 
senegalensis , etc.) 

Sterna nilotica. The Gull-billed Tern is known to breed in the spring in 
quite large numbers on the Mauritanian coast at the Banc d'Arguin, c. 
i9°3o'N (some 1600 pairs in 1978 — Trotignon 1980). It was also found to 
be laying in May and June 1972 on an island just south of St. Louis on the 
coast, c. i5°5o'N (Latour 1973). I have often observed it flying over the 
ocean along the coast of Mauritania, but the birds referred to here were seen 
inland. They occurred in the rainy season, end June to early October, in 
1978 and 1979. They appeared to be hawking for insects over the steppe and 
were sometimes seen in considerable numbers (about 500 together on 8 
October 1978). 

On 24 September 1978, c. 80 km south of Nouakchott (i7°22'N, 
i6°o4'W), I found 8 adults by a lake of about 1 km by \ km, created by the 
rain. Some earth banks formed an island and on these I located two Gull- 
billed Terns' nests, one empty and one with a single egg. There were 10 
birds here on 8 October 1978. In 1979 there was not sufficient water to form 
a lake. 

The interest of this site lies not only in its inland location (c. 6 km from the 
ocean) but also in the fact that these birds had adopted the tropical rainy 
season nesting pattern, contrary to the coastal birds which nest in the spring, 
as is usual for this species in Palaearctic regions. 

Alaemon alaudipes. The Hoopoe Lark was recorded as occurring, and 
indeed nest building was reported, as far south as Nouakchott (i8°05'N) by 
Heim de Balsac & Mayaud (Joe. eit.). I recorded this species in song at many 

309 [Bull.B.O.C. 19 Si: 101(2)] 

locations during the years 1 978-1 980 between c. i8°45'N(89 km northeast 
of Nouakchott) and i7°3o'N (64 km south of Nouakchott). I did not explore 
further north, but went much further south and did not see the bird at all 
south of i7°i5 ; N. 

On 27 April 1980, I found a nest with one egg (bird sitting) at i8°io'N, 
I5°54'W (12 km northeast of Nouakchott). It was in the top of a Maerua 
crassifolia bush about 5 o cm high, on flat bare steppe with little vegetation. 
The nest still had one egg on 28 April ; on 1 May it was empty. 

I can find no other definite proof of breeding in Mauritania apart from 
a nest discovered on the Banc d'Arguin (Trotignon 1980). If it is assumed 
that frequent song and song flights indicates breeding, then it seems likely 
that this species breeds as far south as i7°3o'N. 

Lanius excubitor. During 1978, 1 thought that the Great Grey Shrike was 
only a winter visitor to the Nouakchott area, as I did not see it in the summer 
months. However, on 27 July 1979, I saw 3 juveniles south of Nouakchott 
(i7°3o'N, i6°o2'W), on 5 August 1979 one juvenile (i7°33'N, i6°oi'W) 
and on 30 September 1979 2 juveniles with an adult northeast of Nouakchott 
(i8°4i'N, i5°37'W). During the summer of 1980, I saw adults in several 
places. There were again juveniles around i7°3o'N, i6°o2'W on 10 July 
and on 20 July 1980 I found a nest with a bird sitting on 4 eggs near Aleg 
(i7°ij'N, i4°i6'W). 

The only previous breeding records for Mauritania appear to be those of 
Heim de Balsac {loc. cit.) who recorded in 1947 several nests in Zemmour 
(c. 25°3o'N, n°o4'W) in which eggs were laid January-March. Evidently 
in southern Mauritania the species breeds during the rainy season and there 
is an influx in the winter months. The race I observed was elegans, since the 
rump was grey, not white. 

Passer simplex. During 1978 and 1979, 1 saw little of the Desert Sparrow, 
as most of my activities were near the coast or near the Senegal River. 
However, I did find the species occasionally along the roads leading ESE 
and NE from Nouakchott. On 25 February 1979, with Dr. and Mrs. G. 
Morel, I visited Akjoujt and just to the west of the town (i9°44'N, 
I4°28'W), we found 2 nests of the species. Adults were bringing food to the 
nests and young could be heard calling inside. 

During 1980 I made more trips to the ESE from Nouakchott and found 
Desert Sparrows at many points along this road, starting about 14 km from 
the coast, and continuing at least as far as i7°i5'N, i4°i6 / W. They were in 
small groups of up to a dozen, and in many cases in the same area as the 
Sudan Golden Sparrow Passer luteus. There were numerous nests (between 
50 and 300 per square km) which may have belonged to either species, 
located in Balanites aegyptiaca and Acacia sp. bushes or low trees. Most nests 
were unoccupied, but on 20 July 1980 at i7°57'N, i5°28'W, a female was 
seen bringing nesting material and at i7°2 5'N, i4°3i'W, a pair were flying 
around and into a finished but empty nest. The habitat of the species was 
sandy steppe, lightly bushed with the thorny trees mentioned. The birds also 
occurred around isolated buildings and in the town of Boutilimk (i7°33'N, 
i4°42'W). I have not seen the species nearer than 14 km from the coast. In 
the coastal strip, there is a preponderance of non-thorny bushes {Salvadora 
per ska, Tamarix senegalensis , Euphorbia balsamifera and Maerua crassifeiia). 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(2)] 310 

Previous records of breeding of this species in Mauritania were only from 
the Adrar (north of 20°N) by Heim de Balsac (loc. cit.). 

Other species. I have recorded during their normal breeding season 28 
other species in southwest Mauritania whose normal breeding range lies 
further north. Of these, 4 species have been known to breed in Mauritania, 
with some evidence but no proof of breeding near Nouakchott: — Spotted 
Sandgrouse Pterocles senegallus (flocks observed coming to Nouakchott from 
north to drink all months except August and October-December, when I 
was unable to visit the drinking hole); Bar-tailed Desert Lark Ammomanes 
cincturus (seen all times of year along road from Nouakchott to the NE; 
flying juveniles around i8°4i'N, i5°4o'W on 15 July 1979); Brown-necked 
Raven Corpus ruficollis (throughout the year, common to 1 7°N, scarce further 
south); Olivaceous Warbler Hippolais pallida (summer visitor April-July; 
pairs observed and song heard at Nouakchott; netted birds referred to race 
opaca with bill width 5.5 mm at base — Williamson 1976). 

Discussion. The evidence of breeding presented in this paper indicates 
extensions of the known breeding range of 4 species: Cream-coloured 
Courser, Hoopoe Lark, Great Grey Shrike and Desert Sparrow. It is tempt- 
ing to correlate this with the recent drought in the Sahel, which might be 
expected to bring desert species further south. However, I do not believe 
the evidence is very strong that there has been an extension south of the real 
breeding range of these species. The apparent extension may well be due to 
the greatly increased volume of observation in recent years. I have examined 
all the published and all the known unpublished ornithological data for the 
area of Mauritania shown on the large map (except Banc d'Arguin), and 
conclude that at least 4 times as much field observation and recording 
(c. 550 hours) was done by me in the years 1 978-1 980 as had been carried out 
in all the preceding years. This is partly thanks to the improved tarred road 
system built since about 1 970, but also to the fact that I resided at Nouakchott 
and had enough free time to make these observations. 

Acknowledgements: I would like to thank Dr. and Mrs. G. Morel for their help and 


Bird, C. G. 1937. Some notes from Port Etienne, Mauritania and the coast of Rio de Oro. 

Ibis. Ser.i4(i): 721-731. 
Heim de Balsac, H. & Mayaud, N. 1962. Les Oiseaux du Nord-Ouest de VAfrique. Editions 

Paul Lechevalier : Paris. 
Latour, M. 1973. Nidification de cinq especes de Larides au voisinage de Tembouchure du 

fleuve Senegal. IJOiseau et R.F.O. 43(2) : 89-96. 
Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 1970, 1973. African Handbook of Birds, Series 3. 

Longman : London. 
Morel, G. J. 1 972. Liste Commentee des Oiseaux du Senegal et de la Gamble. ORSTOM : Dakar. 
— 1980. Supplement de la Liste Commentee des Oiseaux du Senegal et de la Gambie. ORSTOM : 

Serle, W. & Morel, G. J. 1979. Les Oiseaux deTOuest Africain. Delachaux et Niestle: Paris. 
Trotignon, J. 1980. Pare National du Banc d'Arguin. Comptes-Rendus d'Activites Scientifiques 

(Oct. 77-Fev. 79). B.P. 1 24, Nouadhibou, Mauritania. 
Williamson, K. 1976. Identification for Ringers. The Genera Cettia, Locustella, Acrocephalus 

and Hippolais. British Trust for Ornithology: Tring. 

Address: P. W. P. Browne, 1 1 5 Crichton Street, Ottawa, Ontario, KIM 1 V8, Canada. 
©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

3 1 1 [Bull. B.O. C. 1 9 8 1 : i o i (2) ] 


Rotating behaviour of the incubating Yellow-bellied 
Fruit Pigeon Treron waalia 

On 9 April 1971 at Pong Tamale (9°4o'N, o°5o'W), northern Ghana, I noticed a green 
pigeon sitting on a nest c. 3 m up in a bare, unidentified, tree. I circled round the tree trying 
to get a good view of the bird, which proved to be a Yellow-bellied Fruit Pigeon Treron 
waalia. The bird imperceptibly shuffled round so that its upraised tail was always presented 
towards me. The grey-brown and white barred underside of the tail looked like a piece 
of bark. The rotation was quite deliberate, as I must have moved through an arc of well 
over ioo° always seeing the undertail. I got a flank view only when I was a considerable 
distance from the nest tree. The nest came to grief on 21 April, a well incubated egg being 
found beneath the tree. A few miles away, on the 21 April, a second nest of the same 
species was found when a bird was startled from a partly foliaged tree. A more cautious 
approach on 24 April enabled me to see that at this nest too the incubating bird rotated to 
keep its cocked-up tail towards the observer. On 5 June the adult bird was disturbed off 
at least one squab. 

This behaviour is clearly cryptic, keeping the conspicuous purple shoulder patch, and 
possibly some yellow of the underparts, from view. Presumably it would be effective against 
ground based predators such as man or the Patas Monkey Erythrocebus patas. It does not 
appear to have been reported before from T. waalia and is not mentioned by Tarboton & 
Vernon (1971) in their notes on the breeding of Treron australis. However, Crome (1975) 
gives a detailed description of similar behaviour by incubating male Purple-crowned 
Pigeons Ptilinopus superbus. He emphasises that he saw rotating only by males which, un- 
like the females, have brilliant colours on their heads. Treron and Ptilinopus are probably 
not very closely related genera (Goodwin 1 967). 

Acknowledgement: I am very grateful to Mr Derek Goodwin for his valuable advice about 
these observations. 

References : 

Crome, F. H. J. 1975. Notes on the breeding of the Purple-crowned Pigeon. Emu 75: 

Goodwin, D. 1976. Pigeons and Doves of the World. British Museum (Natural History): 

Tarboton, W. R. & Vernon, C. J. 1971. Notes on the breeding of the Green Pigeon Treron 

australis. Ostrich 42 : 1 90-1 92. 

J. Frank Walsh 
30 January 198 1 

80 Arundel Road, Lytham St. Annes, Lanes., FY8 iBN. 

Holarctic and Nearctic sandpipers 

P. B. Taylor's paper 'Pectoral Sandpiper Calidris melanotos and Lesser Yellowlegs Tringa 
flavipes in Zambia' {Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 100(4): 233-235) mentions both species as Nearctic 
vagrants. This is only true of T. flavipes. C. melanotos breeds extensively throughout the 
northeastern Palaearctic and should therefore properly be described as Holarctic. In the 
past, Ginn & Brooke {Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 91(5): 125-126) and Ash {Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 93(1): 
3-6), amongst others, have also incorrectly referred to C. melanotos as a Nearctic wader. 
It appears to be a common error. Dement'ev, Gladkov & Spangenberg(^/>^r of the Soviet 
Union (195 1), Vol 3. Translation: Jerusalem 1969: 169) show the breeding distribution 
of C. melanotos as Holarctic and also (p. 1 74) that of the sympatric C. acuminata. 

The English usage of 'American Pectoral Sandpiper' for C. melanotos and 'Siberian 
Pectoral Sandpiper' for C. acuminata has undoubtedly led to confusion in the past and it is 
unfortunate that the confusion of distribution as a result of these names is still perpetuated. 
'Pectoral Sandpiper' for the Holarctic C. melanotos and 'Sharp-tailed Sandpiper' for the 
Palaearctic C. acuminata are less confusing, as recommended by Voous {Ibis 115 : 628) and 
their proper faunal regions should be recognised when they are quoted in the literature. 

Observers therefore should not jump to the conclusion that every Pectoral Sandpiper 

[Bu/t.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(2)] 312 

is of Nearctic origin: a percentage of C. melanotos records from the western Palaearctic 
and Afro-tropical regions are probably of the Palaearctic stock, a fact which perhaps only 
ringing can establish. 

Two other sandpipers, the Western Sandpiper C. mauri and Baird's Sandpiper C. bairdii, 
breeding in the Chukotski Peninsula are also correctly Holarctic and not Nearctic, as they 
are often incorrectly described. 

B. Zonfrillo 
19 February 1981 

28 Brodie Road, Glasgow G21 3 SB. 

What has been the cause of the present scarcity 
of song birds? 

Having celebrated my hundredth birthday on 30 October 1980, I am 
unquestionably the oldest member of the B.O.C. and therefore the member 
best qualified to compare the status of bird life in England during the last 
half of the last century with that of the first 80 years of this one. The magni- 
tude of the difference is truly staggering. 

In the 19th century on any bright summer's day the air would be filled 
with the joyous song and sounds of a multitude of birds — a multitude 
largely composed of summer migrants which had come to our land to breed. 
To-day in the same place and in similar conditions one would be lucky if one 
heard anything more than the twitter of a House Sparrow. 

Some have attributed the scarcity of our song birds to the large number 
which almost certainly must have died during the devastating droughts 
which are known to have overwhelmed the parts of Africa in which so many 
of them were spending their winters. Others have thought the cause was 
probably owing to the persistent and excessive use of pesticides by farmers 
and gardeners alike. These activities may have been contributory causes of 
their present paucity, but I do not think they have ever been the main one. I 
am personally of the opinion that it must have been largely, if not wholly, 
due to the result of consistent predation on the part of a single species — 
namely the Magpie. Indeed I am inclined to believe that the predations of 
that species may be having an ill effect on the whole of our bird population. 
There can be no doubt that the number of Magpies increased alarmingly 
during the 19 14-19 18 War owing to their population not being checked by 
gamekeepers and landowners, who were, of course, serving this country in 
the army. I <? i% /$ 

18 March 1 98 1 Colling wood Ingram 


It is with the deepest regret that we have heard of the death of Captain 
Collingwood Ingram on 19 May 198 1, as this number goes to press. 

He joined the Club in 1 901, in which year he first exhibited a specimen at a 
Club Meeting and contributed to the Bulletin (Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 12: 39). He 
attended Meetings up to July and September 1973, reading a communication 
on the latter occasion {loc. cit. 93 : 97) and will be remembered by many 

An obituary will be published in the Ibis. 


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Scientific nomenclature and the style and lay-out of papers and of Refer- 
ences should conform with usage in this or recent issues of the Bulletin, unless 
a departure is explained and justified. Photographic illustrations, although 
welcome, can only be accepted if the contributor is willing to pay for their 

An author wishing to introduce a new name or describe a new form should 
append nom.,gen., sp. or subsp. nop., as appropriate, and set out the supporting 
evidence under the headings "Description", "Distribution", "Type", 
"Measurements of Type" and "Material examined", plus any others needed. 

A contributor is entitled to 10 free reprints of the pages of the Bulletin in 
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Correspondence about Club meetings and other matters not mentioned 
above should go to the Hon. Secretary, R. E. F. Peal, 2 Chestnut Lane, 
Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR. 

Published by the BRITISH ORNITHOLOGISTS' CLUB and printed by 
The Caxton and Holmesdale Press, 104 London Road Sevenoaks Kent. 

ISSN 0007-1595 

Bulletin of the 

British Ornithologists' 

>ep» m 

Edited by 
Dr. J. F. MONK 

Volume 101 No. 3 

September 1981 


Tuesday, 17 November 1981 in the Senior Common Room, South Side, 
Imperial College, Prince's Gardens, S.W.7 at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m. Mr P. J. 
Hayman will speak on Sea Birds. Those wishing to attend should send their 
acceptance with a cheque for £5.25 a person to the Hon. Secretary at 2 
Chestnut Lane, Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR (telephone Sevenoaks [0732] 
503 1 3) to arrive not later than first post on Thursday, 1 2 November. 

Tuesday, 12 January 1982 at the same venue and time, Dr T. J. Seller 
of Imperial College on Are Bullfinches and Fruit Crops really incompatible? 

Tuesday, 2 March 1982 Professor Gordon H. Orians will speak on Mates 
and Real Estate in Blackbird Social Systems. 

Gifts or offers for sale of unwanted back numbers of the 
Bulletin are very welcome 

The Club has no reference copies of Vol. 48 and many 
earlier issues; these would be very specially appreciated 


D. R. Calder (Chairman) 
R. E. F. Peal (Hon. Secretary) 
Dr. J. F. Monk (Editor) 
J. G. Parker 
R. A. N.Croucher 

B. Gray ( Vice-Chairman) 

Mrs. D. M. Bradley (Hon. Treasurer) 

R. D. Chancellor 

Revd. G. K. McCulloch, O.B.E. 

Briiish Ornithologists' Club 1981 

3 1 3 [Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(3)] 

Bulletin of the 


Vol. 101 No. 3 Published: 18 September 1981 

The seven hundred and thirty-fifth Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday 7 July 1981 at 7 p.m. 
The attendance was 26 Members and 1 2 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER {Chairman), Major N. A. G. H. BEAL, R. M., 
P. J. OLIVER, J. G. PARKER, R. E. F. PEAL, R. C. PRICE, Professor G. H. N. SETON- 

Guests present were: B. H. BECK, P. CLEMENT, Dr JUDITH A. COLES, Miss 
and C. WAKE. 

Mr J. H. Elgood gave a most interesting address on "The Birds of Nigeria". After ex- 
plaining the vegitation zones in Nigeria and their significance in bird distribution, he 
discussed the various groups of birds in that country, illustratating his remarks with many 
excellent slides of the species concerned. 

Additions to a discography of bird sound from the 
Oriental zoogeographical region 

by Jeffery Bosivall and Wendy Dickson 

Received 2 October ip So 

This paper's main aim is to list published gramophone records that include 
avian sound recorded in the Oriental zoogeographical region, and which 
have been issued or have come to light since the earlier discography (Boswall 
1973). A few discs of recordings of capitive Oriental species are also included. 
Published recordings of Oriental species common to other zoogeographical 
regions made outside the Orient may be traced first by consulting biblio- 
graphies of discographies (Boswall 1974, 1979) then the discographies 

Unpublished recordings of Oriental species may be held by any of the 
archives listed by Boswall & Kettle (1979). The British Library of Wildlife 
Sounds (B.I.R.S., 29 Exhibition Road, London SW7 2AS) holds the follow- 
ing (approximate figures): 30 recordings of 20 species made in Sri Lanka by 
E. D. H. Johnson; 35 recordings of 32 species made in India by F. 
Martin Gauntlett; 35 recordings of 35 species made in Malaysia by T. C. 
White; 70 recordings of 50 species made in Thailand by H. Elliott McClure; 
80 recordings of 60 species made by Derek Holmes in southern Thailand, 
West Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, Kalimantan and Brunei; and 400 recordings 
of 1 5 o species made in Malaysia by Reg Kersley. 

A large collection of Oriental bird recordings, mainly by Ken Scriven, is 
held by him at World Wildlife Fund Malaysia, Wisma, Damansara, P.O. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 3M 

Box 769, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. These are being copied for the British 
Library of Wildlife Sounds. The bird recordings library of the late Datuk 
Loke Wan Tho is housed in the Jurong Bird Park, Singapore (verbal 
communication from Ivan Polunin). 

The Library of Natural Sounds at Cornell University in the U.S.A. holds 
"Noteworthy collections with varying amounts of material from Pakistan, 
India, Nepal, Ceylon, Thailand and Malaysia". Also, Borneo and Taiwan 
are "well represented" (Gulledge 1979). 

The following persons privately hold tape recordings of birds from the 
oriental region:- Derek Holmes (Hunting Technical Services Ltd., Wisma 
Kosgoro 19th Floor, P.O. Box 31/Kbyb, Jakarta, Indonesia) has, additional 
to those deposited at B.L.O.W.S., 9 species from southern Thailand, 10 from 
Sumatra, and 8 from Java; J. H. Becking (Institute for Atomic Sciences in 
Agriculture, 6 Keyenbergseweg, Postbus 48, Wageningen, Holland) has 132 
species from Java and also 9 from Sumatra recorded by H. Bartels; Brian 
Bertram (Zoological Society of London, Regent's Park, London NWi 4RY) 
has a collection of recordings from Assam, particularly of the Indian Hill 
Mynah Gracula religiosa (Bertram 1970); Richard W. Beales (Fisheries 
Department, P.O. Box 2 161, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei) has a small 
collection from Brunei ; Graham Madge (Firway End, George Hill, Crediton, 
Devon, England) has a collection of recordings made in West Malaysia; 
Joe T. Marshall (National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Insti- 
tution, Washington D.C. 20560, U.S.A.) has some material from different 
parts of southeast Asia, as has Ben F. King (c/o American Museum of 
Natural History, Central Park West at 79th St., New York, N.Y. 10024, 
U.S.A.); and Tom Roberts (P.O. Box 33 11, Malir City Post Office, Karachi- 
23, Pakistan) has recordings of 257 species from Pakistan including winter 
visitors from the Palaearctic. H. Elliott McClure has prepared a tape under 
the title "Some bird calls and other sounds of nature in Thailand". The 85 
separately announced recordings are mostly of birds and mostly recorded in 
Thailand by McClure himself. Copies are held by him (60 East Loop Drive, 
Camarillo, California 93010, U.S.A.) and at B.L.O.W.S. in London and 
Cornell in the U.S.A. 


No. 1 and no. 2 listed in Boswall (1973), although first issued in 1970, are still obtainable 
(August 1980) but from a new address: P.M. Films, 39 Windsor End, Beaconsfield, 
Buckinghamshire, England. 


4. Huxley, J. S. 1935. Zoo voices. Six 12 cm 78 r.p.m. single-sided paper-backed discs, no 
numbers. Sound Distributors, London, England. 

Includes recordings of Sarus Crane Grus antigone and White-breasted Sea Eagle Haliaeetus 

5. Greenhall, A. M. & Collias, N. 1954. Sounds of Animals. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, 
FX6124. Folkways Records and Service Corp., 701 Seventh Avenue, New York City, N.Y. 
10036, U.S.A. 

Includes recordings of Domestic Chicken Gallus gallus used to illustrate the paper by 
Collias & Joos(i95 3). 

6. Zuh-ming, Dien. 1958. The songof the Formosan Hwa-mei Garrulax canorus taewanus. One 
25 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, BSRi. The Taiwan Museum, 2 Siangeang Road, Taipei, Taiwan. 

Two caged male Hwa-mey G. c. taivanus (to employ the spelling in Vaurie 1959: 431) 
recorded in Taipei in April 1958, introduced first in Chinese then in English by Prof. 
Charles Hartshorne. The two sides of the disc are the same. 

7. Zuh-ming, Dien. Post 1958. The song of the Formosan Hwa-mei Garrulax canorus taiwanus, 

3i5 [Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(3)] 

Formosan Red-headed Babbler Stachyris ruficeps precognita, Formosan Black Drongo Dicrurus 
macrocercus harterti and Formosan Treepie Dendrocitta formosae formosae. One 25 cm 
33.3 r.p.m. disc, BSR1/2. The Taiwan Museum, 2 Siangeang Road, Taipei, Taiwan. 

Side BSRi is the same as both sides of the previous disc (6). Side BSR2 gives the voices 
of the 3 remaining species listed in the title. The babbler is also called the Rufous-capped 
Babbler (King et al. 1975); the drongo is also called the King Crow (Vaurie 1959), and the 
treepie is known as the Grey Treepie (King et al. 1975). 

8. Van de Werken, H. i960. Vogel Symphonie. One 17 cm 45 r.p.m. disc, DE99.247, published 
with the Artis- Animal-Encyclopaedia, 254 pp., by Ploegsma for Royal Zoological Society, 
Plantage Kerklaan 40, Amsterdam, Holland. 

Among 3 3 species recorded in Amsterdam zoo are on side 1 : Indian Pied Hornbill 
Anthraccce vs malabaricus, Great Hornbill Buceros bicornis, White-crested Laughing Thrush 
Garrulax leucolophus, Gracula religiosa; and on side 2: White-bellied Sea Eagle Haliaeetus 
leucogaster, Peafowl Pavo cristatus and Brown-eared Pheasant Crossoptilon mantchuricum. 

9. Duddridge, P. 1962. Voices of Birdland. One 25 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, no number. Midriver 
Recording Co. Obtainable from "Birdland", Bourton-on-the-Water, Gloucestershire, 

Includes recordings of Barbary Dove Streptopelia risoria, Chinese Painted Quail (Blue 
Quail) Coturnix chinensis, Giant Indian Hornbill Buceros bicornis, and Greater Hill Myna 
Gracula religiosa. 

10. Duddridge, P. 1962. Wildfowl Calling. One 17 cm 45 r.p.m. disc, 7EG 8764. HMV, 

Includes Bar-headed Goose Anser indicus. 

11. Morris, Desmond, 1965. A Day at the Zoo. One 17 cm 45 r.p.m. disc, Oriole EP7083 • 
Oriole Records, London, England. 

Side 1 includes Tawny Eagle Aquila rapax, and side 2 a laughing thrush sp. Garrulax sp. 

12. Morris, Johnny. 1969. Animal Magic. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, Roundabout 4. BBC 
Records, London, England. 

Includes Peafowl (captive) Pavo cristatus, Brainfever Bird or Plaintive Cuckoo Cacomantis 
merulinus, recorded in Singapore by I. Polunin, and White-breasted Sea Eagle Haliaeetus 
laster recorded in Australia. 

13. Anon. 1970. Animal Sounds — Birds. One 17 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, PC 045/6. Procaudio 
Ltd. for BPC Publishing Ltd. (Macdonald & Co. Publishers Ltd., Holywell House, Worship 
Street, London E.C.2.). 

Includes Peafowl Pavo cristatus. 

14. Anon. & Hediger, H. 1970. Mit Professor Hediger im Zoo. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. stereo 
disc, Pick 93-060. Pick- Records, Brunnweisenstrasse 26, Postfach 198, CH 8049 Zurich, 

Includes Indian Hill Myna Gracula religiosa. 

15. Graul, A. 1971. Im Zoo. One 17 cm 45 r.p.m. disc, Graul 712. Arno Graul, Kisslingweg 
44, 713 MiAhlacker, Wurttemberg, West Germany. 

The 18 avian species on side 2 include Hill Myna Gracula religiosa, Argus Pheasant 
Argusianus argus, Satyr Tragopan Tragopan satyr a, Great Hornbill Buceros bicornis, Hooded 
Crane Grus monacha, Demoiselle Crane Anthropoides virgo, Sarus Crane Grus antigone and 
Peafowl Pavo cristatus. 

16. Teeuwen, Gus. 1971. Sounds of Singapore. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, LP0811. G. 
Teeuwen, Singapore. 

Side 2, band 4. "Bird fanciers . . . whilst their ears are tuned to the lovely song of long- 
tailed Shama birds, Chinese thrushes and tiny White Eyes . . ." — presumably White-rumped 
Shama Copsychus malabaricus, laughing-thrush sp. Garrulax sp., and white-eye sp. Zosterops 

17. Simms, Eric. 1971. Wildlife in Danger. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, RED 55M. BBC 
Records, London, England. 

Includes recordings by Philip Wayre of capitve Brown-eared Pheasant Crossoptilon 
mantchuricum and Cheer Pheasant Cat reus rvallichii. 

18. Teeuwen, Gus. About 1 9 ji. Birds of Malaysia (Dutch and English). Two 17 cm 33.3 
r.p.m. discs, TEEi and TEE2. European Phono Club, Amsterdam, Netherlands. 

Arranged for these 2 discs by Ko Zweeres, 1 5 of the recordings are the same as on nos. 1, 
2 and 3 in the first part of the discography (Boswall 1973), but 1 1 species are new. 

[Bull. B.O.C. ipSi: 101(3)] 3 l6 

Side 1 : Hill Myna Gracula religiosa, Red-winged Tree Babbler Stachyris erythroptera, Black- 
necked Tree Babbler Stachyris nigricollis, Paradise Flycatcher Terpsiphone paradisi, Striped 
Tit-Babbler Macronus gularis , Malaysian Black-headed OtiolcOriolus xanthonotus. 

Side 2 : Common Shama Copsychus malabaricus, Yellow-crowned Barbet Megalaima henrici, 
Red-tailed Tailorbird Orthotomus sericeus, Malaysian Peacock Pheasant Polyplectron malacensis, 
Silver-eared Mesia Leiothrix argentauris, Red-rumped Tree Babbler Stachyris maculata. 

Side 3 : Plain Babbler Malacopteron affine, Drongo Cuckoo Surniculus lugubris, Fantail 
Cuckoo Caco mantis variolus, Malaysian Eared Nightjar Eurostopodus temmincki, Many- 
coloured Barbet Megalaima rafflesi, Slender-billed Crow Corvus enca, Bushy-crested Hornbill 
Anorrhinus galeritus. 

Side 4 : Greater Red-headed Tree Babbler Malacopteron magnum, Black-necked Tailorbird 
Orthotomus atrogularis, Chestnut-capped Laughing-thrush Garrulax mitratus, Red-rumped 
Trogon Harpactes duvaucelli, Great Argus Pheasant Argusianus argus, Hume's Tree-Babbler 
Stachyris rufifrons, Black Crested Magpie Platysmurus leucopterus. 

19. Encke, W. 1972. Tierstimmen aus dem Kref elder Zoo. One 17 cm 33.3 r.p.m. single-sided 
flimsy disc with book, 48pp. City of Krefeld, W. Germany. 

Includes Hill Myna Gracula religiosa. 

20. Palmer, S. & Boswall, J. 1973. A Field Guide to the Bird Songs of Britain and Europe. One 
30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, RFLP 5013. Swedish Broadcasting Corporation, Stockholm 105 10, 

Includes a recording made in India of wild Asiatic White Cranes Grus leucogeranus. 

21. Scriven, K. 1974. The Jungle Calls. One 17 cm 45 r.p.m. disc, no number. World Wildlife 
Fund Malaysia, 8th Floor, Wisma, Damansara, Jalan Semantan, P.O. Box 769, Kuala 
Lumpur, Malaysia. 

Side 1 : Yellow-crowned Bulbul Pycnonotus ^eylanicus, Pied Hornbill Anthracoceros corona tus, 
Greater Red-headed Babbler Malacopteron magnum, Hill Myna Gracula religiosa. 

Side 2: Rhinoceros Hornbill Buceros rhinoceros, Black-crested Magpie Platysmurus 
leucopterus, White-rumped Shama Copsychus malabaricus, Great Argus Pheasant Argusianus 

22. Jellis, Rosemary. 1977. Bird Sounds and Their Meaning. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, 
BBC OP 224. Complements her book (256PP). British Broadcasting Corporation, 35 
Marylebone High Street, London WiM 4AA. 

Includes echo-locating calls of the Black-nest Swiftlet Aerodramus maximus lowi and the 
Mossy-nest Swiftlet Aerodramus vanikorensis and vocalisation of wild Indian Hill Myna 
Gracula religiosa intermedia. 

23. Scriven, K. 1977. Fables of the tropical forest (Dutch). One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, WNF 
771, or standard cassette. World Wildlife Fund (Netherlands), Postbus 7, Zeist, Netherlands. 

9 Indonesian fables are spoken in Dutch. Intervals employ recordings provided by 
W.W.F. (Malaysia) of Great Argus Pheasant Argusianus argus, Hill Myna Gracula religiosa. 
Greater Red-headed BabblerM^ lacopteron magnum, Yellow-crowned Bulbul Pycnonotus 
^eylanicus, White-rumped Shama Copsychus malabaricus, Black-crested Magpie Platysmun 
leucopterus. Presumably the same recordings as on no. 21 (see back). 

24. Gunn, W. W. H. & Gulledge, J. L. 1978 (although dated 1977). Beautiful Bird Songs of th e 
World. Two 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. discs, NAS 1000 A/B and NAS 1000 C/D, and 12pp. of tex* 
and illustration. National Audubon Society; and Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, 159 
Sapsucker Woods Road, Ithaca, New York 1485 3, U.S.A. 

In this lavish publication the voices of 50 of the world's most musical avian songsters 
have been brought together and issued with 8 coloured plates specially prepared by Arthur 
Singer. Two of the species were recorded in the Oriental region: the Brown Laughing- 
thrush or Hwa-mey Garrulax canorus recorded in Taiwan by Sheldon Severinghaus and the 
White-eyebrowed Shama Copsychus lu^pniensis in the Philippines by Joe T. Marshall. 

25. Poulier, G. V., & Ranasinghe, D. 1978. Bird Sounds of Sri Lanka — 1. One 17 cm 
45 r.p.m. disc, no number. G. V. Poulier, 2 Sirigal Avenue, Kohuwala, Nugegoda, Sri 

Side 1 : Ceylon Shama Copsychus malabaricus leggei, Brown-headed Barbet (or Oriental 
Green Barbet) Megalaima ^eylanica and Koel Eudynamis scolopacea. 

Side 2 : Southern Magpie Robin Copsychus saularis ceylonensis, Ceylon Black-headed Oriole 
Oriolus xanthornus ceylonensis and White-browed Fantail Flycatcher Rhipidura aureola. 

26. Marshall, Joe & Elsie. 1978. The Gibbons. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, ARA 3. J. W. & 
C. K. Hardy, 161 5 N.W. 14th Avenue, Gainesville, Florida 32605, U.S.A. 



317 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

Side 2, band 15 : Rhinoceros Homb'iMBuceros rhinoceros, barbet sp. Capitonidae, Indian Hill 
Myna Gracula religiosa, sunbird sp. Nectariniidae. 

27. Marshall, Joe T. 1978. Systematic s of Smaller Asian Night Birds based on Voice. One 
30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, AOU 2, supplement to Ornithological Monographs no. 25, 58 pp. 
The disc and monograph are sold together by Glen E. Woolfenden, Assistant to the 
Treasurer A.O.U., Department of Biology, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida 
33620, U.S.A. 

55 recordings: 34 of 17 species of owl of the genus Otus; 11 of 5 species of frogmouth of 
the genus Batrachostomus; 2 of 2 species of nightjar of the genus Eurostopodus, and 8 of 4 
species of nightjar of the genus Caprimulgus. The 43 recordings of the following 39 forms 
were made in the Oriental region. 

Side 1 : Rufescent Scops-owl Otus rufescens, Mountain Scops-owl Otus spilocephalus 
siamensis, vulpes, vanderwateri and hambroecki, Asian Common Scops-owl Otus sunia distans and 
rufipennis, Ryukyu Scops-owl Otus elegans hotelensis, Sulawesi Scops-owl Otus manadensis, 
Simeulue Scops-owl Otus umbra, Mantanani Scops-owl Otus mantananensis romblonis and 
mantananensis, Moluccan Scops-owl Otus magicus beccarii, magicus and albiventris. 

Side 2: Mentawai Scops-owl Otus mentawi, Collared Scops-owl Otus bakkamoena lettia, 
"cnephaeus" and "hypnodes", Luzon Collared Scops-owl Otus megalotis, Wallace's Giant 
Scops-owl Otus silvicola, Philippine Frogmouth Batrachostomus septimus, Gould's Frogmouth 
Batrachostomus stellatus, Hodgson's Frogmouth Batrachostomus hodgsoni, Long-tailed Frog- 
mouth Batrachostomus cornutus, Javan Frogmouth Batrachostomus javensis continentalis, affinis 
and javensis, Eared Nightjar Eurostopodus macrotis, Capped Nightjar Eurostopodus temminckii, 
Migratory Nightjar Caprimulgus indicus, Long-tailed Nightjar Caprimulgus macrurus 
manillensis, bimaculatus and atripennis, Savannah Nightjar Caprimulgus affinis, Little Indian 
Nightjar Caprimulgus asiaticus asiaticus, Salvadori 's Nightjar Caprimulgus pulchellus. 

28. Kabaya, Tsuruhiko. 1978. Birds of the World II: India. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. stereo disc, 
SKS (H) 2008. King Record Co. Ltd., Japan. 

Side 1 : Bar-headed Goose Anser indicus, Sarus Crane Grus antigone, Rose-ringed Parakeet 
Psittacula krameri, Grey Francolin Francolinus pondicerianus, Red-wattled Lapwing Vanellus 
indicus, White-cheeked Bulbul Pycnonotus leucogenys, Large Pied Wagtail Motacilla 
maderaspatensis, Red- vented Bulbul Pycnonotus cafer. 

Side 2 : White-cheeked Bulbul, Red- vented Bulbul, Indian (Common) Myna Acridotheres 
tristis, Common Pariah Kite (Black Kite) Milvus migrans, Rose-ringed Parakeet, Koel 
Eudynamis scolopacea, House Crow Corpus splendens, Jungle Crow Corpus macrorhynchos, Grey 
Francolin, Large Pied Wagtail, Red-rumped Swallow Hirundo daurica, Peafowl Pavo 
cristatus, Tailorbird Orthotomus sutorius, Sarus Crane, Brown Fish Owl Ketupa ^eylonensis, 
White-breasted Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis, Bar-headed Goose, Red-wattled Lapwing, 
Spoonbill Platalea leucorodia, Painted Stork Ibis leucocephalus. 

29. Kabaya, Tsuruhiko. 1979. Birds of the World IV:) Taiwan, Thailand and Malaysia. One 
30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. stereo disc, SKS (H) 2014. King Record Co. Ltd., Japan. 

Side 1 consists of various atmosphere recordings and includes the following species: 
Hwa-mei Garrulax canorus, Chinese Bulbul Pycnonotus sinensis, White-eared Sibia (Formosan 
Sibia) Heterophasia auricularis, Muller's Barbet Megalaima oorti, Indian Pied Hornbill 
Anthracoceros malabaricus, White-rumped Shama Copsychus malabaricus, Red-whiskered 
Bulbul Pycnonotus jocosus, Magpie Robin (Dyal) Copsychus saularis, Blue-throated Bee-eater 
Merops viridis. The diagram on page 5 of the leaflet labelled side 2 refers in fact to side 1. 

Side 2 consists of individual species, each one introduced first in English and then in 
Japanese. Hwa-mei, Chinese Bulbul, Taiwan Bulbul (Formosan Bulbul) Pycnonotus taivanus, 
White-eared Sibia, Black Bulbul Hypsipetes madagascariensis, Muller's Barbet, Little Spider 
Hunter Arachnothera longirostris, Gaudy Barbet Megalaima mystacophanos, Fairy Bluebird 
Ircna puella, Barn Owl Tyto alba, Open-billed Stork Anastomus oscitans, Red-whiskered 
Bulbul, Magpie Robin, White-rumped Shama, Blue-throated Bee-eater, Red Jungle Fowl 
Gallus gallus, Indian Pied Hornbill, White-collared Kingfisher Halcyon chloris, Black-naped 
Oriole Oriolus chinensis, Spotted Dove Streptopelia chinensis. 

30. Palmer, S. & Boswall, J. 1981 (although dated 1980). A Field Guide to the Bird Songs of 
Britain and Europe. One 30 cm 33.3 r.p.m. disc, RFLP 5015. Swedish Broadcasting Corpora- 
tion, Stockholm 105 10, Sweden. 

Includes a White-breasted Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis and a Tickell's Thrush Turdus 
unicolor recorded in Nepal by C. Chappuis. 

White, T. C. In prep. A Field Guide to the Bird Songs of South-east Asia. Offers of tape 
material to T. C. White, 6c Rosebery Avenue, Harpenden, Herts. AL5 2PQ, Britain. 

[Bull.B.O.C. ipSi: 101(3)] 3 l8 

Acknowledgements: Ron Kettle, the B.L.O.W.S.'s curator, cast his eagle eye over an 
earlier draft detecting a number of sins of commission and omission. Thanks are also due 
to James Gulledge, Kees Hazevoet, Derek Holmes, Tsuruhito Kabaya, Joe T. Marshall, 
H. Elliott McClure, Pilai Poonswad, G. V. Poulier, David Wells and T. C. White. 

References : 

Bertram, B. 1970. The vocal behaviour of the Indian Hill Mynah, Gracula religiosa. Anitn. 

Behav. Monographs 3 : 79-192. 
Boswall, J. 1973. A Discography of Bird Sound from the Oriental Zoogeographical Region. 

Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 93(4) : 170-172. 

— 1 974. A bibliography of wildlife discographies. Recorded Sound 54: 305. 

— 1979- A supplementary bibliography of wildlife discographies. Recorded Sound 74-75 

I 2 ' 

— & Kettle, R. 1979. A revised list of wildlife sound libraries. Recorded Sound J4~f^ : 

70-72, reprinted inBiopbon 7(1) : 3-6. 
Collias, N. & Joos, M. 1953. The spectrograph ic analysis of the sound signals of the 

domestic fowl. Behaviour 5: 175-189. 
Gulledge, James. 1979. The library of natural sounds at the Laboratory of Ornithology, 

Cornell University. Recorded Sound 7 4-7 5 : 38-41. 
King, B., Woodcock, M. & Dickinson, E. C. 1975. A Field Guide to the Birds of South-east 

Asia. Collins : London. 
Vaurie, C. 1959. The Birds of the Palearctic Fauna: Passer if or mes. Witherby, London. 

Addresses: Jeffery Boswall, c/o British Library of Wildlife Sounds, B.I.R.S., 29 Exhibition 
Road, London SW7 2AS. Wendy Dickson, Foxbury Cottage, Lesbury, Alnwick, 
Northumberland NE66 3BA. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Notes on eggs of the Hook-billed Kite Chondrohierax 
uncinatus, including two overlooked nesting records 

by Lloyd F.Kiff 

Received 7 October 1980 

During routine study of the Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology 
(WFVZ) egg collection, I discovered 2 clutches of Hook-billed Kite Chon- 
drohierax uncinatus eggs, misidentified by the original collector; and since 
there are few published nesting records for this species and even fewer 
descriptions of its eggs, it seems worthwhile recording them. 

The eggs were collected by or (probably) for the professional collector, 
Frank B. Armstrong, in the vicinity of Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas (23 
44'N, 99 08 'W), in Mexico on 14 May 1908 (WFVZ no. 120, 613) and 2 May 
1 910 (WFVZ no. 16,292). The former set came to the WFVZ as a part of the 
Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences collection, whereas the latter set 
was most recently in the Col. L. R. Wolfe collection. 

Both sets were identified by Armstrong as eggs of the Everglade (Snail) 
Kite Kostrhamus sociabilis, a species superficially similar to the Hook-billed 
Kite in appearance and diet. My reasons for thinking that the eggs are in fact 
those of the Hook-billed Kite are as follows: (1) there is no evidence that 
the Snail Kite has ever nested as far north in Mexico as central Tamaulipas 
(Friedmann etal. 1950, Edwards 1972, Peterson & Chalif 1973), but the Hook- 
billed Kite is at least locally common there (Smith, in press); (2) both 
Armstrong's clutches were in nests composed of "twigs, roots and bark' 
20 and 22 feet off the ground in open woods, similar to the nesting situations 

3 i9 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(3)] 

Fig. 1 . A Hook-billed Kite Chondrohierax uncinctus egg from Oaxaca, Mexico (top) and two 
probable Hook-billed Kite eggs from Tamaulipas, Mexico (bottom). 

[BhII.B.O.C. 1981:101(9,)} 





3 2i [BulLB.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

described for Hook-billed Kites by Haverschmidt (1964, 1968), Fleetwood 
& Hamilton (1967), Delnicki (1978), Smith (in press) and Rowley (in press), 
but quite different from the details of nest heights, materials and habitat given 
for the Snail Kite by Bent (1937) and Brown & Amadon (1968); (3) Arm- 
strong's eggs are virtually identical to unquestioned Hook-billed Kite eggs 
in the WFVZ collection, but differ from those in a large series of Snail Kite 

The eggs of WFVZ no. 120,613 measure 44.0 x 35.4 and 42.5 x 35.3 mm, 
with empty dry shell weights of 2.18 and 2.16 g, respectively. Equivalent 
measurements of WFVZ no. 16,292 are 46.9 x 37.6 and 44.3 x 36.2 mm, with 
empty dry shell weights of 2.85 and 2.21 g, respectively. These measure- 
ments agree closely with those of a Hook-billed Kite egg (WFVZ no. 21,331) 
collected near Tapanatepec, Oaxaca, Mexico (16 2o'N, 94 io'W) by Rowley 
(in press); that egg measures 47.4x36.6 mm, with an empty dry shell weight of 
2.44 g. The only other known museum clutch of Hook-billed Kite eggs was 
collected in Surinam and the eggs measured 43.4 x 36.9 and 46.6 x 37.3 mm 
(Haverschmidt 1968). 

One egg from each of Armstrong's 2 clutches is shown in the Plate ac- 
companying, together with the Hook-billed Kite egg from Oaxaca men- 
tioned above. All are very similar in colour, being dull white with heavy 
spots and blotches of dark chocolate brown. They are also identical in 
colour to eggshell fragments taken from 3 other Hook-billed Kite nests at 
Tamaulipas in 1980 by T. Smith and to a second egg taken by Rowley at 
Oaxaca that was broken when found. 

Snail Kite eggs are similar in size (65 eggs of the Florida race, plumbeus, 
averaged 44.2 x 36.3 mm (Bent 1937); 12 eggs of the Mexican race, major, 
in the WFVZ collection average 44.2 x 36.0 mm), but differ in both colour 
and shape from Hook-billed Kite eggs (see Plate). Snail Kite eggs are marked 
to varying degrees with spots and splotches of light, buff, and medium 
brown, but none of the specimens in the WFVZ series of 56 clutches bears 
the dense chocolate brown markings that are evidently typical of Hook-billed 
Kite eggs. In addition, Snail Kite eggs in the WFVZ series range in shape 
from subelliptical to short subelliptical (all shape designations follow 
Preston in Palmer 1962: 13), whereas all the presumed Hook-billed Kite 
eggs are nearly elliptical in shape. 

Among American kites, the eggs of the Swallow-tailed Kite Elanoides 
forficatus show most similarity to those of the Hook-billed Kite in size (a 
Florida sample of 50 averaged 46.7 x 37.4 mm - Bent 1937), shape (elliptical 
to short subelliptical), and shade of brown markings, although they are 
rarely as heavily marked (see Plate). It is, however, unlikely that Armstrong 
or his collectors would have misidentified that striking species. Furthermore, 
the Swallow-tailed Kite is not known ever to have nested in northern 
Mexico, even during the era when it occurred as a breeding species in 
Texas and portions of the United States Midwest (Friedmann et at. 1950). 

As suggested by Haverschmidt (1964), the 2 eggs attributed to the Hook- 
billed Kite by Schonwetter (1961) are probably mis-identified, since their 
measurements, averaging 5 3.6 x 40.5 mm, are so much greater than authentic 
examples. In addition, an accompanying illustration of one of the eggs 
(Schonwetter : Plate 6, fig. 8) shows that it is short oval in shape and white with 
a few reddish-brown spots, mostly at the large end. In these particulars, 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 3 22 

Schonwetter's purported Hook-billed Kite eggs closely resemble those of 
the larger Grey-headed Kite Leplodon cayanensis described by him (op. cit.) 
and by Brown & Amadon (1968), as well as 2 sets of eggs of the latter species 
in the WFVZ collection. The WFVZ eggs are white with a few medium 
brown and purplish brown scrawls and spots, mostly on the larger ends 
(see Plate). Their shapes range from short oval to long oval, and they measure 
54.3x40.6 and 53.7x43.7 mm with empty dry shell weights of 4.13 and 4.43 g, 

The WFVZ Grey-headed Kite clutches were taken in Trinidad for G. D. 
Smooker, and those mentioned by Schonwetter (1961) and Brown & Ama- 
don (1968) were presumably acquired by the same collector. Two additional 
clutches collected in Trinidad for Smooker and identified by him as Hook- 
billed Kite eggs are also in the WFVZ collection, and another such clutch 
is in the collection of the Zoological Museum of the University of Helsinki 
(no. 9603). However, all 3 are probably eggs of the Grey-headed Kite, since 
they are similar to those of the WFVZ Leptodon clutches in shape, colour, 
and size. 

Although Smooker's Trinidad kite sets were collected between 1929 
and 1933, they were not mentioned in the long paper that he co-authored 
on the nesting habits of the birds of Trinidad and Tobago (Belcher & 
Smooker 1934-193 7). When asked about this years later, Smooker replied 
(letter to Col. L. R. Wolfe, 3 August 1953) that "The eggs of Chondrohierax 
uncinatus and Odontriorchis palliatus {=Eeptodon cayanensis) were not described 
in the paper you mention because at that time I was not quite certain of their 
identity and therefore thought it best to omit them". 

Finally, there appears to be no basis for the comment by Brown & Amadon 
(1968) that the eggs of the Hook-billed Kite resemble those of Elanus 
leucurus, since they differ from all members of the genus Elanus in all fun- 
damental details, including size, shape, and colour of markings. 

Acknowledgments: I appreciate comments on the manuscript by Tom Smith. I am 
grateful to Clark Sumida for preparing the figure, and to J. Terhivuo for providing me with 

details on the Smooker kite eggs in the University of Helsinki collection. This note was 

supported by the Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology. 

References : 

Belcher, C. & Smooker, G. D. 1934-1937. Birds of the colony of Trinidad and Tobago 

(in 6 parts).//'// Ser 13(4): 572-595, etseq. 
Bent, A. C. 1937. Life histories of North American birds of prey. Pt. \. Bull. U.S.N at. Mus. 

Brown, L. & Amadon, D. 1968. Hawks, Eagles, and Falcons of the World. McGraw-Hill: 

New York. 
Delnicki, D. 1978. Second occurrence and first successful nesting record of the Hook-billed 

Kite in the United States. Auk 95 : 427. 
Edwards, E. P. 1972. A Field Guide to the Birds of Mexico. E. P. Edwards, Sweet Briar, 

Fleetwood, R. J. & Hamilton J. L. 1967. Occurrence and nesting of the Hook-billed Kite 

{Chondrohierax uncinatus) in Texas. Auk 84: 598-601. 
Friedmann, H., Griscom, L. & Moore, R. T. 1950. Distributional check-list of the birds of 

Mexico. Pt. 1. Pacific Coast Avifauna No. 29. 
Haverschmidt, F. 1964. Beobachtungen an Chondrohierax uncinatus (Temminck) in Surinam. 

J.Orn. 105 : 64-66. 
— 1968. Birds of Surinam. Oliver and Boyd: Edinburgh. 
Peterson, R. T. & Chalif, E. L. 1973. A Field Guide to Mexican Birds and Adjacent Central 

America. Houghton Mifflin: Boston. 

323 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

Palmer, R. S. (Ed) 1962. Handbook of North American Birds. Vol. 1. Yale Univ. Press: New 

Haven, Connecticut. 
Rowley, J. S. In press. Breeding records of land birds in Oaxaca, Mexico. Proc. Western 

Found. Vert.Zool. 
Schonwetter, M. \cj6i.Handbuch derOologie. Pt. 3. Akademie-Verlag : Berlin. 
Smith, T. In press. Nests and young of two rare raptors from Mexico. Biotropica. 

Address: Lloyd F. KifT, Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology, 11 00 Glendon Avenue, 
Los Angeles, California 90024, U.S.A. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Breeding and other observations on the Slaty Egret 
Egretta vinaceigula 

by R. J. Dowse tt 

Received 14 October ipSo 

The specific status of the Slaty Egret Egretta vinaceigula has only recently 
been established with certainty, and many aspects of its biology are quite 
unknown. In particular, there has been no information on its breeding be- 
haviour (Hancock & Elliott 1978), with no nest hitherto observed, although 
Benson, Brooke & Irwin (1971) mention sighting an unapproachable colony 
on the Chobe River in northern Botswana in May 1971. Thus one of my 
aims during a visit to the swamps of the Okavango region of Botswana in 
1975 was to search for nests. 


I spent 3 days in June visiting, by boat, parts of the Moremi Wildlife 
Reserve, in company with P. A. Smith and J. Steen. On 15 June, Smith 
took me to a mixed heronry on Xakanaxa lediba (=lagoon), at 19 n'S, 
23 ° 2 3'E. There was little breeding activity, but we did find an occupied 
nest of the Slaty Egret. As our boat approached, one of the adults would 
slip off the nest, creep through the thicket of wild fig, Ficus verruculosa, which 
the heronry occupied, and then fly off. A second adult was sometimes nearby. 
There were 3 pulli in the nest; 2 were rather larger than the third and they 
would usually climb off into the thicket before we were near. 

Two others, apparently a pair, were often seen on the other side of the 
colony, but we did not find their nest. A further 8 Slaty Egrets were present 
in the Ficus at dusk on 1 5 June, and elsewhere in Moremi we saw 4 single 
birds loosely associating together at a pool. During the 3 days I spent in the 
Okavango swamps I saw no Black Egrets E. ardesiaca. 

Accounts of the Xakanaxa heronry have been published by Berry (1968), 
Child (1972), Fraser (1971) and Steyn (1970). (The spelling of this locality 
name has varied, but P. A. Smith tells me that the official vernacular spelling 
is as I have it here,) These authors mention several species of water birds 
breeding there (some of which I also found in June), but no Slaty Egrets, 
and I am unaware of any observations of this species since my own. Their 
visits to the heronry were later in the year than mine, which may explain 
why they failed to find Slaty Egrets if they usually breed about May and June. 


The extensive thicket of Ficus verruculosa in which the Xakanaxa heronry 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 324 

H situated is on the edge of a large lagoon. The nest was placed just below 
the canopy, some 2 m above water level, and was 3 2 cm in diameter. 

The 2 larger nestlings were active and were not handled. The smallest 
nestling was examined in the hand when the nest was first found, and was 
collected as a specimen on 16 June when we had confirmed the identity 
of the nest owner. It is now preserved in the collection of the National 
Museum of Botswana at Gaborone. 

The feather tracts of the nestling are mostly covered with long sooty 
black down. The feather sheaths on the wings and tail are starting to sprout 
feathers, again sooty black. Some of the down on the belly is greyer than that 
elsewhere. On the ventral side there are feather tracts down both flanks, 
with a broad median apterium. Dorsally, there is a thick tuft of down on the 
crown, developing into two caudal tracts, a spinal tract and two long humeral 

The nestling had the iris coloured mid-brown; bill pinkish horn, extreme 
tip dark; tarsus and toes pea green in front, with chrome yellow soles and 
hind tarsus; all the body skin greenish, with the gular region yellowish 
green; toe nails pale horn. The specimen was subsequently prepared as a 
study skin out of formalin, and within one month the tarsi had become 
blackish and much thinner than in life. In a mixed heronry the thick, pea 
green legs and yellowish throat skin should identify a very young Slaty 
Egret. Measurements of the dried-out specimen are: culmen (exposed) 28 mm 
and tarsus 31 mm. In the flesh these measured respectively 30 and 37 mm. 

This specimen has been compared to a rather older nestling of Black 
Egret in the collection of the Livingstone Museum, Zambia. The bill and 
tarsus of the Black Egret are recorded as black on the label, but the feet 
show the yellow colour which is also present in adults. No other important 
differences are obvious at this early age, but it is interesting that leg colours 
do differ, as in adults of the two species. 


My own observations in Botswana and Zambia support the contention 
of Benson, Brooke & Irwin (1971) and Vernon (1971) that there are con- 
sistent differences in morphology and behaviour between the Slaty and 
Black Egrets. Benson, Brooke & Irwin wrote at a time when only 3 speci- 
mens of Slaty Egret were known. Subsequently, Irwin (1975) has described 
another 2 specimens and suggested further diagnostic morphological 
characters. Two specimens have since been obtained in Zambia, and are in 
the collection of the Livingstone Museum. One is a non-breeding $ collected 
at Maala, on the Kafue River near Namwala (Southern Province), on 23 
June 1974 (J. F. R. Colebrook-Robjent); the other is a non-breeding cJ from 
32 km northwest of Mongu in Western Province, obtained on 23 August 
1975 (T. O. Osborne). 

Colour differences 

All 7 specimens now known, together with numerous field observations, 
confirm the considerable variation in the colour of the underparts of the 
Slaty Egret. There is also some variation in the length of the occipital plumes, 
but 1 1 of the 12 birds I watched closely in the Okavango in June 1975 had 
short plumes - most of them very short - although one very dark coloured 
adult had very long plumes. The colour of body plumage at Okavango 

325 [Bull.B.O.C. ipSi: 101(3)] 

varied quite extensively, but all were predominantly slate in colour. In my 
experience even the darkest Slaty Egret is never as black as Black Egrets, 
but F. Dowsett-Lemaire and I once saw at Lochinvar National Park in 
Zambia on 12 August 1978 a Black Egret which was as pale slate-grey as any 
Slaty. The bird was a typical Black Egret in all other respects : it lacked any 
vinous or buffy throat patch, had black legs and yellow feet, and hunted food 
by "umbrella-ing" with its wings. Although plumage differences between the 
two species are usually diagnostic in the field, care does need to be exercised, 
and further observations are needed to determine if there are any seasonal 
changes in the colour of plumage, legs and bill of Slaty Egrets. 

Milewski (1976) correctly suggested that the most useful feature for 
identifying the Slaty Egret is the chrome yellow tarsus and foot, but he was 
wrong to state that this character had not been pointed out before, as it has 
been well-known to observers in Zambia and was stressed by Berry (1974). 
The yellow-green tarsal colour of all collected specimens (Benson, Brooke & 
Irwin 1 97 1, Irwin 1975) confirms that this is a consistent character, though 
one which is subject to post mortem change. 


Weights are now available for 5 Slaty Egrets, namely 2 that I caught for 
ringing in Zambia at Lochinvar, the 2 Zambian specimens and one from the 
Okavango quoted by Milewski (1976). The 4 Zambian birds range 250-297 g, 
mean 275 g, while the Okavango bird weighed 340 g. In comparison, the 
weights of Black Egrets caught for ringing at Lochinvar by J. D. Mbewe and 
A. S. Muyundu were 270-390 g, mean 324 g (n=7), while a specimen from 
Botswana is quoted by Benson, Brooke & Irwin (1971) as weighing 14J 02 
(=c. 410 g). These data suggest that Slaty Egrets average somewhat lighter 
than Black Egrets. On the basis of wing, culmen and tarsus measurements of 
the few specimens examined, Benson, Brooke & Irwin(i97i) and(Irwin 1975) 
had suggested that the Slaty is consistently the smaller species. 

Feeding methods 

Ways in which the feeding habits of Slaty and Black Egrets differ have 
been suggested by Vernon (1971) and Milweski (1976) , and our observations 
in Zambia generally are in accord. I know of no proven instance of Slaty 
Egrets using the "umbrella" method of prey hunting so typical of Black 
Egrets, and Irwin (1975) has suggested structural differences in their wings 
to explain this behaviour. 

Outside the immediate vicinity of a heronry, Slaty Egrets are typically 
seen at pans and pools on floodplains. Although they do overlap with Black 
Egrets on the shallow edge of noodwaters, they are rarely to be seen in the 
deeper waters fished by Black Egrets. The nestling Slaty Egret in Botswana 
regurgitated 4 small fish when first handled, and when collected the next day 
its stomach contained remains of at least 8 more small fish, each 30-40 mm 
in length. 


Slaty Egrets are quiet birds, although an adult flushed from the nest did 
utter a few heron-like squawks while perched and watching us from a 
distance. Black Egrets frequently utter a similar call when feeding com- 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(3)] 3 26 


The distribution of the Slaty Egret as then known was mapped by Snow 
(1978: 20). Recent observations extend its range northwards in Zambia to 
the Bangweulu swamps (Berry 1974, D. R. Aspinwall) and Nchelenge District 
at Kabendwe(8° 28'S, 29 i7'E), almost on the Zaire border (Aspinwall 1978). 
In Zambia the species is most often reported from the floodplains of the 
Kafue Flats (Blue Lagoon and Lochnivar National Parks) and of the Liuwa 
Plain National Park. 

It occurs widely in the wetlands of northern Botswana, with one sighting 
as far south as Maun (Milewski 1976), and there is a specimen from Kabuta 
in the Caprivi Strip (Smithers 1964). A single Slaty Egret was reported from 
2 localities near Salisbury in Zimbabwe in September and November 1978 
(Evans 1979, Tree 1979). However, 2 sight records from Malawi (Day & 
Hanmer 1978) are not entirely convincing, in particular since neither refers 
to the conspicuously yellow tarsi. The status of the 2 specimens (including 
the type) from Potchefstroom in the Transvaal of South Africa in 1895 is 
unclear (Benson, Brooke & Irwin 1971), there being no other records south 
of northern Botswana. 

Up to the end of 1978 there were some 55 fully acceptable dated records 
from Zambia, for the following months: Jan. 4, Feb. 1, Mar. 2, Apr. 2, 
May 4, June 6, Jul. 8, Aug. 4, Sep. 4, Oct. 7, Nov. 10, Dec. 3. Most flood- 
plains are difficult of access during the rains, between about December and 
April, but I lived continuously in one key area (Lochinvar National Park) for 
z\ years 1968-71; other ornithologists to have lived there are R. J. 
Douthwaite and T. O. Osborne. Our continuous observations over several 
years provide no evidence of substantial movement by the Zambian popu- 
lation. However, Slaty Egrets have been observed during the rains in places 
that are completely dry for much of the year. Conversely, increased numbers 
during the dry season on the Liuwa Plain and the Kafue Flats (when parties 
of up to 30 are not uncommon) may suggest some regularity of movement, 
perhaps as post-breeding dispersal. Published dates from Botswana are even 
more influenced by the seasonal movements of ornithologists. 

There is so far no evidence of the Slaty Egret breeding in Zambia, although 
it may be expected to do so. Peak numbers of Black Egrets on the Kafue 
Flats are during the rains, but the 2 species may breed at much the same time 
of year, all egg-laying records for Black Egret in Zambia (Benson, Brooke, 
Dowsett & Irwin 1971 and subsequent data) being from March to June. 

Irwin (1975) has suggested that the Slaty Egret may be a relict species 
with a naturally declining population. Flowever, its range may well be found 
to be more extensive than hitherto supposed, as more observers realise the 
distinctness of its field characters. On present evidence its distribution is 
strangely limited, and it could well be especially vulnerable to land-use 
alteration, such as the dams affecting flood levels on the Kafue Flats in 
Zambia and projects to utilise the waters of the Okavango swamps in 
Botswana. It should be considered an endangered species. 

Acknowledgments: My visit to Botswana was requested by U.N.D.P.'s Investigation 
of the Okavango Delta project (through Mr. H. M. Ernest), and I received much-appreciated 
assistance there from Messrs. W. L. Astle, P. A. Smith and J. Steen. Authority to collect 
a nestling Slaty Egret was obtained through the co-operation of Dr. \V. von Richter of 
the Botswana Department of Wildlife and National Parks. I am grateful to those observers 
in Zambia who have submitted records. Messrs. C. W. Benson, R. J. Douthwaite and 
M. P. Stuart Irwin have kindly commented on a draft of this paper. 

327 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

References : 

Aspinwall, D. R. 1978. Bird notes from northern Nchelenge District. Bull. ZambianOrn. Soc. 

10: 1-4. 
Benson, C. W., Brooke, R. K., Dowsett, R. J. & Irwin, M. P. S. 1971. The Birds of Zambia. 

Collins : London. 
Benson, C. W., Brooke, R. K. & Irwin, M. P. S. 1971. The Slatey Egret Egretta vina- 

ceigula is a good species. Bull.Brit.Orn.C 7. 91:13 1-1 3 3 . 
Berry, G. F. 1968. Short notes on birds breeding in the Moremi Wildlife Reserve, Bot- 
swana ioth-20th September 1968. Bokmakierie 20: 97. 
Berry, P. S. M. 1974. Slatey Egret Egretta vinaceigula in the Bangweulu swamps. Bull. 

Zambian Orn. Soc. 6 : 49. 
Child, G. 1972. A survey of mixed "heronries" in the Okavango delta, Botswana. Ostrich 

43: 60-62. 
Day, D. H. & Hanmer, D. B. 1978. (Letter). Bokmakierie 30: 108. 
Evans, P. J. 1979. (Letter). Honeyguide 97: 37. 

Fraser, W. 1971. Breeding herons and storks in Botswana. Ostrich 42 : 123-127. 
Hancock, J. & Elliott, H. F. I. 1978. The Herons of the World. London Editions: London. 
Irwin, M. P. S. 1975. Adaptive morphology in the Black and Slatey Egrets Egretta ar- 

desiaca and Egretta vinaceigula, and relationships within the genus Egretta (Aves : Ar- 

deidae). Bonn. Zool.Beitr. 26: 155-163. 
Milewski, A. V. 1976. Feeding ecology of the Slaty Egret Egretta vinaceigula. Ostrich 47: 

Smithers, R. H. N. 1964. A Check-list of the Birds of the Bechuanaland Protectorate and the 

Caprivi Strip. Trustees of the Nat. Museums of Sth. Rhodesia: Salisbury. 
Snow, D. W. 1978. An Atlas of Speciation in African Non-passerine Birds. British Museum 

(Natural History) : London. 
Steyn, P. 1970. Journey for bitds. Bokmakierie 22 : 86-92. 
Tree, A. J. 1979. Recent observations in Mashonaland. Honeyguide 97: 18-24. 
Vernon, C. J. 197 1. Observations onEgretta vinaceigula. Bull.Brit.Orn.C I. 91 : 157-159. 

Address: R. J. Dowsett, Nyika National Park, Private Bag Chilinda, P.O. Rumphi, Malawi. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Observations on some Palaearctic land birds in Ghana 

by J. Frank Walsh and L. G. Grimes 

Received ij November 1980 

In his classic paper on problems of Medit erranean-Saharan migration 
Moreau (1961) drew attention to the paucity of published evidence for the 
occurrence of many species of Palaear ctic birds in West Africa. This situation 
began to be rectified with the appearance of major papers from Senegal 
(Morel & Roux 1966) and Nigeria (Elgood et al. 1966). Subsequent in- 
formation for Nigeria, published in the Bulletin of the Nigerian Ornithological 
Society, was partly used by Moreau (1972) and further data appeared for 
Senegal (Morel & Roux 1973) and for the Ivory Coast (Brunei & Thiollay 
1969, 1970). Over a number of years we kept records of Palaearctic land 
birds in Ghana, of which the following add to our present knowledge. 

Our observations mainly relate to 2 savanna areas; one in the north and 
one in the south of the country. Data from the northern savanna, especially 
around Bolgatanga (io° 48 'N, o° ji'W), were collected over 3 seasons 
(1970-1973) by J.F.W.; that from the Accra Plains in the south, particularly 
in the area around the University of Ghana at Legon (5 38'N, o° n'W), 
were collected over several years by L.G.G. Reference is also made to 
records by M. Wink made during 2 short stays in February and March 1972 
and 1973 (Wink 1976) and to the more extensive records of Sutton (1970), 
Macdonald (1978) and M. Lockwood (in prep.). 

[Biill.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(3)] 3 28 

In the northern savanna there is one wet season and one long dry season 
(November to April) with an average rainfall of about 40 inches (1016 mm). 
On the Accra Plains the average annual rainfall varies from 30 inches (762 
mm) near the coast to over 50 inches (1270 mm) inland, but in contrast to 
the north the rainfall is double peaked with a major peak in May and June 
and a minor one in September and October. In both areas the rainfall is 
erratic in timing and quantity, and the dry seasons are severe enough to 
quickly wither and dry the vegetation. It should perhaps be noted that in 
northern Ghana rainfall was well below average in 1970 but not in 1971 
and 1972, while in the Sahel rainfall was particularly poor in 1971 and 1972 
(Winstanley et at. 1 974). 

Of the 24 species discussed below, 8 are previously unreported for Ghana, 
though all have occurred in both Senegal (Morel & Roux 1973) and Nigeria 
(Elgood et al. 1966, Elgood 1975). These Ghana records provide strong 
evidence in particular of major wintering by Booted Eagles Hieraaetus 
pennatus and Sedge Warblers Acrocephalus schoenobaenus, and support Moreau's 
(1972) view that the paucity of records reflects the shortage of observers, 
rather than the absence from much of West Africa of many species such as 
Hobby Falco subbuteo, Common Swift Apus apus, Pallid Swift Apus pallidus, 
and Reed Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus. 

The records of territorial behaviour and singing add to the data on win- 
tering behaviour. Many Palaearctic passerines exhibit territorial behaviour 
in their West African winter quarters, many sing to some extent, from oc- 
cassional sub-song (Bluethroat Luscinia svecicd) to full song throughout 
the season (Melodious Warbler Hippolais polyglotta). Some, such as the Wood 
Warbler (phylloscopus sibilatrix) and Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus), 
appear to be in full song during spring migration, but not to sing fully 
whilst in winter quarters. 

The systematic list follows the order adopted by Serle et al. (1977). 


(♦first published record for Ghana) 
♦Montagu's Harrier Circus pygargus 

Recorded only from the north; one in the White Volta valley on 7 January 
1 97 1 and single birds over rice paddies along the Bolgatanga-Tamale road 
in December 1972, January 1973, February 1972 and 1979, and March 1975. 
All records refer to male birds, which appear to be almost as common as 
male Pallid Harriers Circus macrourus, in a ratio of 6: 8. Females and im- 
mature birds of the 2 species were not distinguished. 

♦Long-legged Buzzard Buteo refinus 

A party of 3 birds, all of different phases, considered to be this species was 
seen by both of us over Abokobi (5 ° 4o'N, o° 12'W) on the Accra Plains on 
30 November 1971. 

♦Booted Eagle Hieraaetus pennatus 

This eagle is now known to winter regularly in West Africa. It was re- 
corded regularly at Bolgatanga between December and March in each year 
of J.F.W.'s stay (1970-73). Recently in Upper Volta, J.F.W. has seen it at 
Ouagadougou in January and at Banfora in March, as well as along the main 
road from Paga on the Ghana border to Ouagadougou in October, January 
and March. Light phase birds have turned up occasionally on the Accra 

329 [Bu/LB.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

Plains and have been seen by both of us there. Mundy & Cook (1972) have 
a number of records for Sokoto in Nigeria between January and March. 

♦European Hobby Falco subbuteo 

Good sightings at less than 10 m of an adult over an area of burnt grass 
at Legon on 5 March 1973. B. Smit {in litt). had other sightings, in the dry 
season of 1971/72, which he considered to be this species. J.F.W. saw 3 in 
the Bafilo area of neighbouring Togo on 12 December 1978 (Cheke & Walsh 

Turtle Dove Streptopelia turtur 
There are a few records of this species from the north and none from the 
south. It has been taken at Mole Game Reserve, where an adult and an im- 
mature bird were shot on 12 October and 12 November 1971 respectively. 
A single bird was seen at Bolgatanga in December 1971 and 4 were at Vea 
Dam for several days in January 1973. The only published record is that of 
Wink (1976) who recorded a flock of c. 50 on 1 April 1973 near Lawra (io° 
37'N, 2 5 3'W). The increase in rice cultivation at the Vea Dam may help to 
concentrate numbers in the future, as Morel & Roux (1973: 538) found in 

European Cuckoo Cuculus canorus canorus 
One bird at Pong Tamale on 26 April 1971 is the only savanna record. 
Macdonald (1978) saw it at New Debiso (6° 38'N, 3 08 'W), in the forest 
zone, on 8 April 1977. 

♦Alpine Swift Apus melba 

On 4 March 1974, groups of c. 30 birds occurred over the Accra Plains 
with Common Swifts and the Mottled Swift Apus aequatorialis and were 
quite widespread over the western districts of the plains. It is impossible 
to know whether they were from the Palaearctic, but the date is suggestive. 
A large group (c. 300 birds) was present with Common Swift and House 
Martin over Amedzofe (6° 54'N, o° 24'E) in February 1975 following the 
re-occurrence of harmattan conditions in the south. 

Common Swift Apus apus 
The autumn passage in the north is extremely small compared with the 
spring passage. Six were seen at Bolgatanga on 19 August and 20 at Vea 
Dam on 21 August, then a few others later; while at Tumu, Sutton (1970) 
only had one record. In contrast the spring records are numerous (latest 
date at Bolgatanga, 6 June) and invariably occur after storms. At Nandom 
(io° 50'N, 2 45 'W), Sutton (1970) witnessed a broad front movement in- 
volving thousands of swifts. In the south most records fall between Feb- 
ruary and March but some flocks appear over Legon in December and 
January, indicating a wintering population. Largest numbers (c. 500) were 
present on 4 March 1974 following unusual weather, the inter-tropical 
convergence zone returned southwards to reach the coast owing to a large 
anticyclone over southern France and Spain (Grimes 1974). 

Pallid Swift Apus pallidus 

Sutton (1970) strongly suspected that it occurred at Tumu with Cmmono 
Swifts. J.F.W. recorded one among 50 Common Swifts on 29 April 1971, 
25 miles north of Tamale and 2 at Mole Game Reserve on 19 December 1971. 
Macdonald (1978) saw the species at Cape Coast on 30 November 1976 and, 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 330 

in the company of G. Vanderstichelen and J.F.W., at Tafo on 29 January 
1978. These are the only published records from Ghana. 

European Bee-eater Merops apiaster 
Sutton (1970) recorded it in September and May at Tumu and R. B. Payne 
(in litt.) in October 1975 at Mole Game Reserve. These are the only records 
for the Upper Region of Ghana. Further south J.F.W. saw a flock of 12 
feeding over savanna woodland on 3 December 1971 at 7 45 'N, i° 45 'W; 3 
were in noticeable wing moult. It is a regular visitor to the western areas 
of the Accra Plains and there is evidence that numbers have increased since 
the i95o's. Gass (1963) recorded them occasionally, but they are now re- 
gularly seen between November and April, usually in flocks of 5-10 feeding 
in cassava plantations. About 25 were seen together in the Asukakaw valley 
(7 40 'N, o° i7'E), in the cocoa growing area of the Volta Region, by J.F.W. 
on 11 January 1972. 

Sand Martin Riparia riparia 
Sutton (1970) recorded them at Tumu only in October and in the spring 
months beginning in February, latest date 2 1 May. This is also the pattern 
at Bolgatanga; earliest and latest dates are respectively 18 September and 
2 May. In the south, Wink (1976) saw 5 along the Volta river near Akosom- 
bo (6° 20'N, o° 05 'E) on 27 February 1972. M. Lockwood (in litt.) found 
Sand Martins roosting regularly with Swallows (1 : 100) near Tafo-Akim in 
January and February 1975 , but not in other months. 

Swallow Hirundo rustica 

At Vea Dam, 'European' Swallows have been recorded from mid-Septem- 
ber (with H. rustica lucida) until mid-October and then very few until early 
March, after which they become fairly common from mid- April to early 
May (5 moving east on 16 May near Bolgatanga). In the south the earliest 
arrivals reach the Plains in late August (Gass 1957). Large numbers arrive 
in September and roosts occur in reed beds bordering the Densu river on 
the western edge of the Plains. Most birds leave by late March but on 2 
March and 6 April 1973 flocks of c. 30 and c. 10 birds respectively were seen 
flying purposefully northwest over the University at Legon at about 0800 
hours, which suggests that they had come in from off the Gulf of Guinea 
(see Moreau 1972: 124) on their way north. After a storm on 14 April 1973, 
c. 100 birds were present with Common Swifts over the hills that skirt the 
Plains to the north of Accra. In the forested areas it is widely distributed 
in clearings and towns and along roads. A large roost (c. 20,000 birds) in 
a sugar cane plantation first located in 1971 near Tafo-Akim was used also in 
subsequent years; the tight swirling flight of the flock that precedes fall 
out into the roost at dusk (see Rudebeck 1955) has been observed there. M. 
Lockwood (in prep.) has trapped French and German ringed birds at the 
Tafo roost and re-trapped her own ringed birds in subsequent years. The 
data do not support the suggestion in Elgood et al. (1966) that most Swallows 
depart from southern Ghana in late December. 

House Martin Delichon urbica 

At Tumu, Sutton (1970) gained the impression that considerable numbers 

arrived in October and continued to build up until December, after which 

they were less numerous. Large numbers, however, have been recorded in 

late March at Mole Game Reserve. At Pong Tamale three were seen on 

33i [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

28 April with Common Swifts Apus apus and Little African Swifts Apus 
affinis. The only observation in the south (3 at Amedzofe (6° 45 'N, o° 24/E)) 
was made a few days after the re-occurrence of harmattan conditions. Wink 
(1976) saw 300 on 17 March near Prang (8° oj'N, o° 24/E) and 5 on 4 April 
1973 near Gambaga(io° 33'N, o° 30'W). 

Tawny Pipit Anthus campestris 

One, very shy, was found in an open arid treeless area covered with tussock 
grass near Boltgatanga on 26 December 1971. Wink (1976) considered that 
he saw one on a sandy section of a lagoon east of Accra on 21 February 1973 
and Macdonald (1978) reported single birds near the coast at Ankaful 
on 27 February and on the coast at Nakwa on 21 June 1977. These are 
the only published records from Ghana and it it suprising that 3 of the four 
birds were seen on the coast. 

Red-throated Pipit Anthus cervinus 
Many records from mid-November to the end of January in the vicinity 
of Vea Dam, where flocks of c. 30 birds often formed; much commoner in 
the north than the Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis. On the Accra Plains, Lamm & 
Horwood (1958) recorded it once with a small flock of Motacilla flava sp. and 
they have turned up occasionally at irrigation dams. Within the forest belt, 
M. Lockwood has netted the occasional bird at Tafo-Akim near the town's 
reservoir and on the golf course. 

♦Blue Rock Thrush Mont kola soli tar ius 

Regularly seen at the Bongo Hills ( 1 o° 54'N, o° 49' W) during 1971 and 1972, 
when up to 3 birds <?, $$2) were often seen during a single visit, the 2 females 
being together. A male was present from November at Mampong Quarry 
(5 ° 42'N, o° o4'E) on the Accra Plains in 2 consecutive years, remaining until 
mid-March 1971 and the end of February 1972. In 1971 there were 2 males 
there on 1 2 and 23 February, song was heard and chasing occurred on the first 
date, but the birds were well separated during the second visit. Wink (1976) 
recorded a female at the same quarry on 27 March 1973 which had not been 
present earlier and was not seen subsequently. The local Cliff-Chat 
Myrmecocichla cinnamomeiventris is resident at the quarry, and the Rock Thrush 
Monticola saxatiiis has also been seen there. These records are similar to those 
from the Gambia (McGregor & Thomson 1965) and Nigeria (Elgood et al. 
1966) in that the birds were seen on rocky outcrops at low altitudes, the 
Gambia record actually being at a coastal cliff, whereas the records from 
Sierra Leone and Liberia are from highland areas (Field 1973). 

*Bluethroat Luscina svecica 

First seen on 12 November 1972 at Vea Dam, where a male, believed to 
be cyanecula^ was seen in rank vegetation over water. The following day 2 
males were seen and the number eventually reached 10 on 3 December. On 
this date the birds were noticeably more noisy and some chasing occurred; 
one male gave a subdued but musical song. Birds were in rank grass and 
thorny vegetation on the bunds and in the ditches separating the paddy 
fields, and in 2 uncultivated but floodied paddies. They occasionally entered 
grown rice. Numbers probably remained the same until 7 January, the 
highest counts being on days when there was much territorial behaviour; on 
other visits birds were skulking and only a few were located. A male netted 
on 6 January was considered to be the nominate race. Other species netted 

[Bull.B.O.C. 19S1 101(3)] 33 2 

on the same day in the same net were Great Reed Warbler, Savi's Warbler 
and Sedge Warbler. After the first week in January the paddy dried out 
rapidly and the Bluethroat numbers dropped, the last being seen on 17 
January, though 8 later visits were made. The series of observations in 
rank vegetation over wet ground closely parallels those of Fry (1966) in 
Nigeria. The only other record for Ghana is of a male at the Kumasi sewage 
farm, on 28 January 1973, in rank grass growing up to 2-3 m high beside a 
polluted stream. Present in the same area were Sedge Warbler, Reed Warbler 
and a Cisticola species. Ashford (1969) netted a similar group of species with 
a Bluethroat in a patch of spiny weed Amaranthus spinosus at the University of 
Ibadan, Nigeria. The Kumasi record is thus the second from the derived 
savanna zone. 

♦Savi's Warbler Locus te Ha luscinioides 

Three birds were heard giving liquid trills in rank vegetation on wet 
ground at Vea Dam on 4 January 1973. A specimen of the nominate race 
(weight 15.0 gm, wing 69 mm), now housed in the British Museum, Tring, 
was netted at the same place on 6 January. It is unlikely that these birds were 
overwintering at the site. This is the first record for Ghana and the only 
record between Senegal and Nigeria. Other species present in the rank 
vegetation were Sedge Warblers, Bluethroat and Black-backed Cisticola 
Cisticola eximia 

Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus 
Records indicate that Ghana is an important wintering area. The first 
arrivals (earliest date 24 August 1972) at Vea Dam are skulking and silent 
and may be more numerous than records suggest. By mid-November 1972 
many birds held territories within rice paddies and the high counts of c. 17 
and c. 30 birds obtained respectively on 26 November 1972 and 7 January 
1973 were possible only because of their marked territorial activity. In mid- 
January the paddy was cut but birds remained in the area (c. 6 on 2 and 10 
February). Two netted on 6 and 7 January 1973 weighed 10.5 and 12.8 gm; 
one sent to the British Museum was considered to be of the nominate race. 
At Accra they have been located in Typba beds in wetlands and at the edges 
of irrigation dams. Three birds were caught in the same net on 30 January 
within a period of 3 hours (weights 10.5, 10.5, 10.8 gm and wings 60, 64 and 
64 mm respectively); all had earlier been in song. Other sight records are: 
4 on 19 December 1972 at Yeji ferry (8° i7'N, o° 5 3'W) where they were in 
vegetation bordering the Volta lake, which now provides a very extensive 
habitat for Acrocephalus species; 3 at Kumasi sewage farm (6° 42 'N, i° 40 'W) 
on 28 January in rank undergrowth, their calls suggesting that at least 12 
may have been present; and at least 6 at Tafo on 29 January 1978, some of 
them in song, were seen by J.F.W. in the company of M. A. Macdonald and 
G. Vanderstichelen. Sutton (1970) located Sedge Warblers at Tumu (io° 
51'N, 2 oo'W) in February, March and April. Recent records from Upper 
Volta at latitude i2°N by J.F.W. suggest regular wintering. In Nigeria, 
Walsh (1971) found evidence for it wintering on Foge Island on Lake 
Kainji (c. io° 35'N) and also a movement through the area in April, with 
stragglers in May. British ringed birds have been recovered in Ghana. 

Reed Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus 

One was seen in rank vegetation beside a polluted stream at Kumasi 

333 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

sewage farm, which also contained Sedge Warblers and a Bluethroat Luscinia 
svecica, on 28 January 1973. On the Accra Plains one was collected in dry 
thicket within the Botanical gardens of the University on 12 December 1964 
(weight 10.0 gm, wing 66 mm) and another on 31 January 1973 (weight 
8.6 gm, wing 61 mm) in Typha beds which also held Sedge Warblers and the 
Rufous Cane Warbler Acrocephalus rufescens. In Upper Volta at i2°N it occurs 
on passage in March, but wintering was also noted in 1976-77, one of 4 
years during which careful observations were made (J.F.W.). British ringed 
birds have been recovered in Ghana. 

Great Reed Warbler Acrocephalus arundinaceus 
At the Vea Dam near Bolgatanga 2 were in song on 26 November and 3 
on 3 December 1972. They were not heard again, but one (weight 27.0 gm, 
wing 90 mm) was netted in the same area on 6 January 1973. It was of the 
nominate race, its tawny buff underparts suggesting a first year bird. Not yet 
recorded from the Accra Plains but likely to occur in sugar plantations on 
the eastern edge, as it has been netted near the coast at Lome in Togo 
(Robinson 1972). Recent studies by M. Lockwood (in prep.) in the forest 
region near Tafo-Akim (6° 13'N, o° 22'W) have shown it to be a regular 
winter resident, particularly in sugar cane plantations. 

Melodious Warbler Hippo lais polyglot ta 
There are few records from the north: one near Bolgatanga giving sub- 
song in January whilst feeding low down in Mimosa pigra and a tangle of rank 
grass; and one at Pong Tamale (9 40 'N, o° jo'W) on 3 occasions (21 and 
26 April and 7 May 1971). On each visit a bird was singing from within the 
same large Acacia and thus might well have been the same bird. In Mole 
Game Reserve (9 12'N, i° 5o'W) singing birds were recorded daily in late 
March by L.L.G. On the Accra Plains it is well distributed in parklands and 
well-watered gardens, and on inselbergs. Most birds arrive in mid-October 
(earliest date 30 September) and song may be heard regularly from the end 
of October (some are in song earlier) through to early April. In mature 
gardens, birds appear to hold territories from mid-January, for song is 
heard from the same bush or tree each day. In less hospitable areas birds are 
heard irregularly, which suggests that some do not hold territories. 

Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita 
Wink (1976) did not realise that his record was the first for Ghana. At 
Yeji on 16 March 1972 he netted one which was moulting on head, breast, 
primaries and secondaries. He also recorded one in song on 21 February 
1973 in a thicket clump east of Accra. 

Wood Warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix 
The only records from the north involve birds apparently on passage in 
spring 1 97 1. A few were present in tall trees at Pong Tamale from at least 
28 March until 26 April and also one was seen there on 6 May. Those in 
April were present with large numbers of Willow Warblers Phylloscopus 
trochilus which departed between 3 and 10 April; both species were in song. 
Singing Wood Warblers have been recorded on several occasions in March 
and April in well wooded areas of the Accra Plains and also along the edges 
of forest reserves north of the Plains. The earliest record for Accra is 29 
November 1973. 

Acknowledgements: We are grateful to our correspondents, and especailly to Mrs M. Lock- 
wood. Mr G. Vanderstichelen accompanied us on many memorable field trips. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981 101(3)] 334 

References : 

Ashford, R. W. 1969. Two species new to Ibadan, and associated records. Bull. Niger. Orn. 

Soc. 6: 30-31. 
Brunei, J. & Thiollay, J. 1969. Liste preliminaire des oiseaux de Cote d'lvoire. Alauda 37: 


— 1 970. Liste preliminaire des oiseaux de Cote d'lvoire (Supplement). Alauda 3 8 : 72-7 3 . 
Cheke, R. A. & Walsh, J. F. 1980. Bird records from the Republic of Togo. Malimbus 2: 

1 1 2-1 20. 
Elgood, J. H. 1975. The new Nigerian checklist. Z?#//. Niger. Orn. Soc. 1 1 : 68-73. 
Elgood, J. H., Sharland, R. E. & Ward, P. 1966. Palaearctic migrants in Nigeria. Ibis 108: 

Field, G. D. 1973. Ortolan and Blue Rock Thrush in Sierra Leone. Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 93: 

Fry, C. H. 1966. Status of the Bluethroat in Nigeria.^//. Niger. Orn. Soc. 3 : 98-99. 
Gass, M. D. I. 1957. Some migrant birds of Ghana. Nigerian Field 22 : 166-168. 

— 1963. The Bee-eaters of Ghana. Nigerian Field 28 : 3 1-34. 

Grimes, L. G. 1974. Weather conditions in temperate latitudes and the occurrence of Alpine 

and Mottled Swifts at Accta.Bull. Niger. Orn. Soc. 10: 38-39. 
Lamm, D. W. & Horwood, M. 1958. Species recently added to the list of Ghana birds. 

Ibis 100: 175-178. 
Macdonald, M. A. 1978. Records of Palaearctic migrants in Ghana.ifo//. Niger. Orn. Soc. 14: 

McGregor, I. A. & Thomson, A. L. 1965. Blue Rock- Thrush Monticola solitarius in the 

Gambia. Ibis 1 07 : 401 . 
Moreau, R. E. 1961. Problems of Mediterranean-Saharan migration. Ibis 103a: 373-427, 


— 1972. The Palaearctic- African Bird Migration Systems. Academic Press: London and 
New York. 

Morel, G. & Roux, F. 1966. Les migrateurs palearctiques au Senegal. Terre et Vie 113: 

— 1973. Les migrateurs palearctiques au Senegal: notes complementaires. Terre et 
Vie 27: 5 2 3-5 5 °- 

Mundy, P. J. & Cook, A. W. 1972. Birds of Sokoto, Part i.Bull. Niger. Orn. Soc. 9 : 26-47. 
Robinson, N. 1972. Bird notes from Republique du Togo. Bull. Niger. Orn. Soc. 9 : 85-89. 
Rudebeck, G. 1955. Some observations at a roost of European Swallows and other birds 

in the southeastern Transvaal. Ibis 97 : 5 72-5 80. 
Serle, W., Morel, G. J. & Hartwig, W. 1977. A Field Guide to the Birds of West Africa. 

Collins: London. 
Sutton, R. W. W. 1970. Bird records from Ghana in 1967 and 1968/69. Part 2. Bull. Niger. 

Orn. Soc. 7: 76-93. 
Walsh, J. F. 1971. Further notes on Borgu birds. Bull. Niger. Orn. Soc. 8 : 25-27. 
Wink, M. 1976. Palaearctische Zugvogel in Ghana (Westafrika).ifow/. Zool.Beitr. 27: 67-86. 
Winstanley, D., Spencer, R. & Williamson, K. 1974. Where have all the Whitethroats gone? 

Bird Study 21 : 1-14. 

Addresses: J. F. Walsh, 80 Arundel Road, Lytham St. Annes, FY8 iBN, UK. 

Dr L. G. Grimes, 3 St. Nicholas Court, St. Nicholas Church Street, Warwick, CV34 4JD, 


©British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 

The Collared Turtle Dove Streptopelia decaocto in Egypt 

by Steven M. Goodman <& Patrick F. Houlihan 

Received ij November 19 So 

On 8 February 1979, while on a roof-top of a six-storey building at Talaat 
Harb Square in downtown Cairo, Egypt, we observed 3 Collared Turtle 
Doves Streptopelia decaocto. Two doves were perched approximately 4 m 
from one another on a wire, and were singing the characteristic tri-syllabic 
"coo-coooo-cuh" call. After several minutes of observation, a third bird 

335 [Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(3)] 

appeared, and landed between the 2 singing birds. Upon our approach 
to within 10-15 m of the birds, all 3 flew away. These observations appear 
to be the first reported for this species in Egypt in a free state. 

Next day SMG returned to the same roof-top and found there a single 
vocalizing Collared Turtle Dove. The bird was collected, but not identified 
as to subspecies, and prepared as a skeletal specimen which is now deposited 
in the University of Michigan Museum of Zoology (201, 255). Some plumage 
notes were recorded before the feathers were removed: there was little 
wear, and no damage from cage battering was noted, nor were there any 
signs that the bird had recently been held in captivity (e.g. no wear of scales 
on one leg, no ring). The grey under tail-coverts, the small terminal tail 
spots and the dark wing-tips, combined with the distinctive call distinguished 
the collected bird from either the Pink-headed Turtle Dove S. roseogrisea or 
the domestic Barbary Dove S. "risoria" (Vaurie 1961). The bird proved to 
be a male with swollen testes : wing (chord) 1 6 3 mm ; tail 1 24 mm ; weight 133 
gm ; left testes 17x2 mm, right 18x3 mm. 

The western range expansion of this species across Europe has been well 
documented (Stresemann & Nowak 1958), but in several cases it has not 
been possible to determine if the colonizers were wild, or escaped cage 
birds (e.g. May & Fisher 1953). At the time the above specimen was collected, 
a pet shop in the downtown area of Cairo, and only 4 city blocks from Talaat 
Harb Square, had collared Turtle Doves for sale. These captive birds were 
kept in cages within an open-air court at the back of the shop. Before re- 
moving the feathers from the specimen collected at Talaat Harb Square it 
was compared to these captive doves, and they matched in plumage colour 
and general feather condition. Upon inquiry, it was learned from the shop- 
owner that he had kept and sold Collared Turtle Doves for at least 2 years, 
during which time several had escaped (no estimate was made as to how many). 
The owner did not disclose from where his stock came. Based on these facts, 
it appears that the birds on the roof-top at Talaat Harb Square were pro- 
bably escaped cage birds from this pet shop (or perhaps another ?) which had 
adapted to the local environs, and were not wild colonizers. 

This species is a common resident in Israel (Meinertzhagen 1920, Arnold 
1962), and it is plausible that range expansion into Egypt could take place 
from this population, but to our knowledge there is no evidence that this 
has occurred, and based upon the above evidence it is best to consider the 
Collared Turtle Doves from Talaat Harb Square as feral cage birds. The 
population appears to be very localized, since we did not observe these 
doves in other areas of Cairo, nor in the country; nor have other workers 
(Haensel 1975, 1980, Meininger & Dielissen 1979) found them present 
recently. The species' range has increased elsewhere due to its introduction 
by man, so we may perhaps see a similar pattern develop in Egypt, with 
subsequent colonization of other portions of northeast Africa. 

References : 

Arnold, P. 1962. Birds of Israel. Shalit Publishers Ltd: Haifa. 

Haensel, J. 1975. Ornithologische Eindrucke wahrend eines Studien-aufenthalts in 

Agypten im Herbst lyji.Beitr. Vogelkd. 21 : 312-322. 
— 1980. Ornithologische Eindrucke wahrend eines weiteren Studien-aufenthalts in 

Agypten im Herbst und Fruhwinter 1972. Beitr. Vogelkd. 26 : 19-29. 
May, R. & Fisher, J. 1953. A Collared Turtle Dove in England. British Birds 46: 51-55. 
Meinertzhagen, R. 1920. Notes on the Birds of Southern Palestine. Ibis Ser. 11(1): 195-259. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 19 81 101(3)] 3 36 

Meininger, P. & Dielissen, B. 1979. Ornitologische Waarnemingen in Egypte in 1977 en 

1978. Veldornitologisch Tijdschrift 2 : 78-86. 
Stresemann, E. & Nowak, E. 1958, Die Ausbreitung der Turkentaube in Asien und 

Europa./. Orn. 99: 243-296. 
Vaurie, C. 1961. Systematic Notes on Palearctic Birds, No. 49 Columbidae: The Genus 

Streptopelia. Amer. Mus. Novit. 205 8 : 1-25 . 

Address: S. M. Goodman, P. F. Houlihan, Bird Division, Museum of Zoology, University 
of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109. U.S.A. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Atlas of speciation in African non-passerine birds — 
Addenda and Corrigenda z 
by D. W. Snow and M. Louette 

Received 20 November 1980 

The following items complete the list of Addenda and Corrigenda that have 
come to our notice since the publication of the Atlas in August 1978. 
An earlier list was published in Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 99 : 66-68 (1979). 

We should make it clear that we are dealing only with records or references 
which were available at the time when the Atlas was being prepared. Hence, 
when these additions and corrections have been made, together with those 
given in the earlier paper, the Atlas should give a comprehensive and reason- 
ably detailed picture of the known distributions of African non-passerines 
at the end of 1976 (the cut-off date for incorporation of published records). 
It may be noted that an exception was made of the distributional synthesis 
of the Cameroun avifauna which appeared in 1977 (Louette 1977, De avifauna 
van Kameroon, Doctorate thesis, Univ. Antwerp), since it contained a con- 
siderable number of new records for that country. 
Map 2. See remark under Map 4. 

Map 4. Podiceps cristatus. Delete the Gabon breeding record. It is based on a 
chick in the Paris Museum which is in fact Tachybaptus ruficollis (Lou- 
ette, op. cit.). (To be transferred to Map 2.) 
Map 25. Ardea purpurea. Found breeding south of Bomboma (c. 2°N, i9°E) 

by Vrijdagh(i954, Gerfaut 44: 300-302). 
Map $6. Anas sparsa. The easternmost record in Cameroun should be a star, 

as ducklings were collected (Louette, op. cit.). 
Map 61. Anas smithii species-group. The record for A. smithii in Shaba is 
erroneous. It was mentioned by Verheyen (1941, Bull. Mus. Hist. Nat. 
Bel. 17 (23): 3), but corrected by Chapin (1954, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. 
Hist. 75B: 624). The specimen, in the Brussels Museum, turns out to be 
Netta erythrophthalma. 
Map 66. Torgos tracheliotus. Insert a second breeding record for the area south 
of Lake Chad: Waza, Cameroun, n° 25'N, 14 34'E (Louette, op. cit.). 
Salvan (1968, Oiseau 38: 54-55) mentions breeding in Chad (in Ouad- 
dai, near i3°N, 2i°E). 
Map 83. Accipiter nisus superspecies. Of the records from between io° and 
2 3°S only the following are correct: the 3 from the NW side of Lake 
Malawi (Nyika and Vipya Plateaux) and the one from near Melsetter 
southeasternmost. The record from Sa da Bandeira, Angola, must be 
considered suspect as no details are given (Rosa Pinto 1970, Mem. 

337 [BulI.B.O.C. 1981:101(1)] 

Trab. Inst. Invest. Ci. Angola 6: 31). The erroneous records refer to im- 
mature A. ovampensis, which can easily be confused with A. nisus 
rufiventris (Benson, Irwin & Steyn, in prep.). The latter is undoubtedly 
essentially montane in tropical southern Africa. 

Map 1 o 1 . Hieraaetus dubius. Recorded from Legon, Ghana (5 ° 3 8 'N, o° 1 1 'W) ; 
specimen in British Museum (Natural History), collected in 1973 but 
not incorporated at the time when the map was prepared. 

Map 125. Francolinus bicaicaratus species-group. Type of F. bicalcaratus 
molunduensis Grote from "Molundu", but see remark under Map 384. 

Map 128. Francolinus coqui species-group. The record of F. albogularis at 
Nanergou, io° 5 5 'N, 00 ° 09 'E, but displaced a little to west of the zero 
meridian on the map (De Roo et al. 1969, Rev. Zool. Afr. 79: 311), is 
based on a misidentification and should be F. coqui. 

Map 162. Balearica pavonina. Breeding at Waza, Cameroun (Dragesco i960, 
Alauda 27 : 265) ; entered in the Atlas as a non-breeding record. 

Map 177. Vanellus crassirostris. Recorded from the Cuanza River, Angola, at 
about 9 2o'S, 1 3 3o'E, by Erard & Etchecopar (1970, Bull. Brit. Orn. 
CI. 90: 159), and found breeding in the same area by Dean (1974, 
Durban Mus. Novit. 10 : 113). 

Map 191. Rostratula benghalensis superspecies. Recorded breeding in the same 
locality as on Map 177 on the Cuanza River by Dean (op. cit.: 112). 

Map 212. Columba arquatrix species-group. Delete the registration of C. 
albinucha at about 2°N, i9°E. 

Map 219. Streptopelia semitorquata. The record near the confluence of the 
Logone and Shari rivers, south of Lake Chad, may refer to S. decipiens 
(cf. Sal van 1968, Oiseau 38 : 130). 

Map 220. Streptopelia turtur species-group. The range of S. hypopyrrha should 
be extended eastward by the following records : near Garoua, Cameroun, 
about 9 i8'N, 13 24'E (Reichenow 19 10, Orn. Mber. 18: 174); Fianga, 
Chad, 9 5 5'N, 15 09 'E and Ngaoundere, 7 i9'N, 13 35'E (Vielliard 
1972, Alauda 40: 78). 

Map 224. Turtur afer. Delete the record on the south side of Lake Chad, 
which probably refers to T. abyssinicus. 

Map 230. Poicephalus meyeri superspecies. Salvan (1968, Oiseau 38: 135) 
gives Kelo (9 i9'N, 15 ° 48 'E) as a breeding locality for P. meyeri. 
Abilela (12 41 'N, 14 45 'E) and Damraou (io° 05 'N, 17 3 5'E) apply 
to meyeri, not senegalus (Grote 1928, /. Orn. 76: 759, contra Salvan (pp. 
cit.). P. senegalus has been observed at Fianga (9 5 5'N, 15 c^'E) by 
Vielliard (1971, Cab. ORSTOM (Sir Hydrobiol.) 5 : 237) and it may occur 
at Waza (cf. Louette, op. cit.). This superspecies needs field work in 
the area of Lake Chad. 

Map 237. Tauraco persa superspecies. The following extend the range of T. 
persa eastward in the blank area north of the Congo river: Oka, o° 37'S, 
1 4 54'E (Meyer de Schauensee 1949, Notulae Nat. 219), Nola, 3 32'N, 
16 04'E (Stone 1936. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia 86: 581), Bobito, 
2 57'N, 1 9 2 5'E, and Boyagati, 3 33'N, 20 ° 33'E (Schouteden 1962, 
Doc. Zool. 3 : 51). 

Map 254. Centropus monachus superspecies. The Lake Chad record, from Ibis 
109: 484 (1967), is certainly based on confusion with either C. senegalen- 
sis or grillii. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981 101(3)] 


Map 259. Tyto capensis. The three records for central S.W. Africa (Namibia) 
are based on sight records. It is unlikely that there could be suitable 
habitat in this area, and in all probability there was confusion with Asio 
capensis (M. P. S. Irwin, Honey guide, in press). 

Map 269. Scotopelia peli species-group. A record of S. bouvieri from the Junk 
River, Liberia (about 6|°N, io^°W, near the record of ussheri), was 
doubted by Allen (1930) but confirmed by Bannerman (1933, Bds Trop. 
W. Africa 3 : 51), and should be added to the map. 

Map 282. Caprimulgus rufigena superspecies. The isolated record of C. rufigena 
in Ghana is based on misidentification of a specimen in the British 
Museum, which turns out on re-examination to be a female C. clima- 


Map 290. Telacanthura ussheri. Recorded at Cape Coast, Ghana (on the coast 
at 1 ° 1 3 'W), the type locality. 

Dendropicos ellioti 

Fig 1 : Distribution of Dendropicos elliotii 

Map 295. Apus barbatus superspecies. The record of A. sladeniae in eastern 
Cameroun should be transferred to approx. 4 45'N, 9 4o'E, near 
Mount Cameroun, which is the type locality (Erosung, Bakossi region) 
for Apus melanotus Reichenow, a synonym. Misplacement due to con- 
fusion with another place called Bakossi in eastern Cameroun. 

Map 296. Apus pallidus superspecies. The isolated Congo record of A. 
niansae (specimen in Philadelphia) needs further study. It would be 
better to compare the specimen with other swifts once again. 

Map 325. Coracias abyssinica species-group. Recorded on the Ghana coast at 
Keta (1 °E) and just inside the forest zone at Kumasi (6° 45 'N, 1 ° 45 'W). 

Map 367. Indicator minor superspecies. The record at about io° W, near the 
Liberian coast, should be /. conirostris, not /. minor (Rand 195 1). 

Map 373. Prodotiscus regulus. Recorded from Kolokope, Togo, 7 48 'N, i° i8'E 
(de Roo etal. 1971, Rev. Zoo/. Afr. 83:88). 

339 [Bull.B.O.C. 198 1 : 101(3)] 

Map 377. Campethera nubica superspecies. The range of C. bennettii should be 
extended to Rwanda, for which Schouteden (1966, Doc. Zool. 10: 70) 
gives several records. 

Map 384. Dendropkos poecilolaemus. The record at about 2°N, 1 5 °E is probably 
erroneous. This is based on a specimen collected by Haberer, one of 
a series labelled "Molundu" but all non-forest species and almost 
certainly not from 2 02'N, 15 ° i3'E. This series includes Francolinus 
bicalcaratus (Map 125). 

Map 388. Dendropkos pyrrhogaster superspecies. Old records of D \ pyrrbogaster 
from Mount Cameroun (c. 4 12'N, 9 n'E) are substantiated by speci- 
mens in Berlin and Stockholm and must be considered valid. 

Map 389. Dendropkos elliotii. The records from Western Zaire in Schouteden 
Doc. Zool. 1 (1961): 98; 3 (1962): 80 and 6(1964): 109 have been omitted. 
The incorporation of these records results in a map as in Fig. 1 . 

Map 390. Dendropkos goer tae superspecies. The range of D. goertae should be 
extended to Rwanda, for which Schouteden (1966, Doc. Zool. 10: 71) 
gives several records. 

Addresses: Dr D. W. Snow, Sub-department of Ornithology, British Museum (Nat. Hist.), 

Tring, Hertfordshire, HP23 6AP, England. 

Dr M. Louette, Koninklijk Museum voor Midden-Afrika, B-1980 Tervuren, Belgium. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Winter field notes and specimen weights of 
Cayman Island Birds 

by Storrs L. Olson, Helen F. Jafnes and Charles A. Meister 

Received 6 January 1981 

We observed and collected birds in the Cayman Islands in November 1979, 
mainly for the purpose of obtaining skeletal material for identification of 
Pleistocene bird fossils known from the islands (Morgan 1977). We were on 
Grand Cayman 14-22 November, during which time we concentrated on 
resident birds in the limestone forests in the middle and eastern portions of 
the island, although we maintained a mist net in constant operation in the 
mangrove forest near our quarters at South Sound, on the southwest coast 
of the island. We were on Cayman Brae 22-26 November, where most 
of our work was in bluff forest in the middle of the island near Stake Bay. 

The most recent list of the avifauna of the Cayman Islands is that of 
Johnston et at. (1971), to which Barlow (1978) added records of migrants 
from Grand Cayman. The ecology and physiography of the Cayman Islands 
with respect to their avifaunas has been treated in detail by Johnston (1975). 
Less ornithological work appears to have been done in the islands in winter ; 
hence for completeness we have included at least some mention of each 
species we observed. Because of the nature of our work, the absence of 
certain species, such as coastal migrants, probably has little significance. 

We have also taken this opportunity to include records made by the late 
Alexander Wetmore, who made 3 vacation trips to Grand Cayman in the 
1970's. Although he did not collect specimens, he kept his usual meticulous 
field notes, which are now on file at the National Museum of Natural History, 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981 101(3)] 340 

Smithsonian Institution. The periods of Wetmore's observations include 
26 January to 16 February 1972, 8-23 February 1973, and 7-18 January 1975. 
An asterisk (*) indicates that a species was also observed by Wetmore but 
that his notes do not require further elaboration. All observations are ours 
unless specifically attributed to Wetmore. 

We did not visit Little Cayman, but the avifauna of this island has recently 
been summarized by Diamond (1980), who also includes an appendix with 
weights of 7 species. Specimen weights in grams appear at the end of each 
species account and were taken with 30, 100, and 300 g Pesola spring scales. 
Minimum, maximum, mean, and standard deviation are given for weights 
when there are 5 or more specimens in a category. GC= Grand Cayman. CB= 
Cayman Brae. 


*Podilywbus podiceps. Pied-billed Grebe. GC, observed on lake E of Bodden- 

Sula leucogaster. Brown Booby. CB, 3 were seen passing bluffs at E end of 
island, 23 November. 

*Fregata magnificens. Magnificent Frigatebird. GC, observed only occasional- 
ly ; more than 20 seen over the turtle rearing pens on the NW tip of the island. 

*Ardea herodias. Great Blue Heron. GC, common at South Sound. 

Egretta alba. Common Egret. Johnston et al. (1971) describe the species 
as "uncommon in winter" on GC. We did not encounter it, but Wetmore 
observed the species on all 3 of his trips. On 14 February 1973 he recorded: 
"Forty to fifty on the larger pond at the Dairy Farm near Boddentown. 
With Snowy Egrets they rested in a close group on a shallow bank flying 
out in groups over somewhat deeper water. Here as they passed while on 
the wing, partly hovering, partly coasting on broad wings they stabbed 
rapidly at the surface of water to seize small minnows." 

Egretta thula. Snowy Egret. GC, common; an impressive feeding ag- 
gregation of more than 20 was observed for several days near the North 
Side Road, where flood waters were washing small poeciliid fishes over a 
dirt road through a marsh. Considerable aggression was noted and there 
was a definite dominance hierarchy among individuals. Wetmore noted this 
species feeding on the wing, as described for E. alba above, both at Meagre 
Bay Pond on 10 February 1972 and at the dairy pond near Boddentown 
on 14 February 1973. CB, a few in mangrove pools. 

*Egretta caerulea. Little Blue Heron. GC, adults and immatures seen on 
several occasions. 

*Egretta tricolor. Louisiana Heron. GC, CB, observed occasionally. 

*Egretta ibis. Cattle Egret. GC, observed on several occasions, usually 
with cattle. CB, with cattle on E end of bluff, also along roadsides and very 
tame at Stake Bay. 

*Butorides virescens. Green Heron. GC, common in mangroves and any 
wet area; no dark phase birds noted. CB, a few in mangroves on S coast. 

* Nyctanassa violacea. Yellow-crowned Night Heron. CB, one in pool on S 

Ixobrychus exilis. Least Bittern. GC, Wetmore observed an individual of 
this species, both perched and on the wing, in cat-tails in the Omega Settle- 
ment area, 7 February 1972. Johnston et al. (1971) list only one other sight 
record for GC. 

34i [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

Plegadis falcinellus. Glossy Ibis. GC, Wetmore observed an adult and an 
immature with herons in the West Bay district, 3 February 1972. Johnston 
etal. (1971) list but one sighting on GC and 2 for CB. 

Anas discors. Blue- winged Teal. GC, encountered by Wetmore on each 
of his trips. 

Anas americana. American Widgeon. GC, 2 seen by Wetmore on 15 
February 1973 and on 20 and 24 January 1975. 

Aythya affinis. Lesser Scaup. GC, 2 adult males seen by Wetmore on 6 and 
10 February 1972 on a lake adjacent to Meagre Bay Pond beyond Bodden- 

Aythya collaris. Ring-necked Duck. GC, we observed at length a male and 

3 females among a flock of American Coots in a flooded quarry at the NW 
tip of the island on 19 November. All field marks, including the ring around 
the bill, were noted. This appears to be the first record of the species for the 
Cayman Islands. 

Oxyura dominica. Masked duck. GC, one seen by Wetmore in a marsh 
in the Red Bay area, 12 February 1972. 

Cathartes aura. Turkey Vulture. Hitherto there have been only 2 reports 
for GC, both equivocal (see Barlow 1978). Wetmore recorded 2 at Pageant 
Beach Hotel 8 January 1975, and noted birds there on 10, 13, 15 and 20 
January 1975, mentioning "several" on the last date. He also saw one "in 
the mosquito control area" 26 January 1975. We observed one soaring over 
the marsh W of the North Side Road on 16 November 1979. CB, one ob- 
served close at hand soaring by bluffs at E end of island on 26 November. 
Johnston et al. (1971) give only one other record (June) for the island. When 
we queried a resident of CB about the "John Crow", she informed us that 
what was popularly thought to be a single individual had been present on 
CB for about 10 years and that lately the species seemed to be more common, 
up to 4 being seen at once. 

Vandion haliaetus. Osprey. GC, observed on 3 occasions; one bird seen close 
at hand was definitely referable to P. h. carolinensis. 

*Falco columbarius. Merlin. GC, observed twice. CB, observed 3 times; 
one was captured 23 November in a mist net, after having killed an Elaenia 
in the net, escaping, and being recaptured near 2 Bananaquits that evidently 
died of fright, as they bore no injuries. CB, ? 21 3 g. 

*Fa/co sparverius. American Kestrel. GC, observed twice in vicinity of 
Breakers, probably one individual. CB, 2 observed along road on S side. 
Subspecific indentifications were not possible. 

*Gallinula chloropus. Common Gallinule. GC, CB, in ditches and pools 
in mangroves. 

Porphyrula martinka. Purple Gallinule. GC, Wetmore observed 2 in the 
Red Bay area on 12 February 1972, one of which, a female with heavy fat 
(USNM 576772), was killed by a car. Johnston et al. (1971) list only 2 records 
for GC, and Bond (1973,./^ Johnston) mentions another. 

*Fulica americana. American Coot. GC, a fair concentration observed with 

4 Ring-necked Ducks (q.v.) on NW tip of island and a few seen elsewhere. 
Charadrius vociferus. Killdeer. GC, Wetmore observed a dozen near 

Spanish Bay 17 February 1973 and noted an individual at Pageant Beach 
Hotel 10-17 January 1975. One sight record is listed by Johnston et al. (1971) 
and one by Bond (1973). 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981 101(3)] 342 

Charadrius semipalmatus. Semipalmated Plover. GC, not infrequently ob- 
served by Wetmore in 1972 and 1975. 

Charadrius wilsonia. Wilson's Plover. GC, Wetmore observed one at Rum 
Point on 13 February 1973. Apparently not previously reported in winter 
(Johnston etal. 1971). 

Pluvialis squatarola. Black-bellied Plover. GC, observed frequently by 
Wetmore on each of his trips. 

*Arenaria interpres. Ruddy Turnstone. GC, we observed a few around 
the turtle pens. 

*Capella gallinago. Common Snipe. GC, we flushed one individual for 
several days in succession in a marshy area 1 km S of Old Man Bay. 

Numenius phaeopus. Whimbrel. GC, Wetmore observed one clearly for 
10 minutes at Caribbean Cattle Farms on 12 February 1972. The only other 
record for the Caymans was reported in Bond (1978) as seen on GC on 9 
September of an unspecified year. 

*Actitis macularia. Spotted Sandpiper. GC, at least 2 individuals seen. 

Tringa solitaria. Solitary Sandpiper. GC, one by pool S of Grape Tree 
Point, 1 6 November. 

*Tringa melanoleuca. Greater Yellowlegs. GC, observed occasionally, 
usually in flooded roads. 

Tringa flavipes. Lesser Yellowlegs. GC, seen by Wetmore in 1972 and 1973. 

Calidris pusillus. Semipalmated Sandpiper. Calidris minutilla. Least Sand- 
piper. GC, both species recorded by Wetmore in 1972 and 1973. 

Himantopus mexicanus. Black-necked Stilt. GC, seen by Wetmore on each 
of his trips, though we failed to encounter it. 

*Thalasseus maximus. Royal Tern. GC, observed at South Sound. 

*Columba leucocephala. White-crowned Pigeon. GC, infrequently seen; 
one bird was discovered roosting at night about 8 m up in mangrove saplings 
with grackles. CB, decidedly uncommon; most observations could have 
stemmed from one individual that flushed repeatedly from the same general 
area on the bluff. 

*Zenaida aurita %enaida. Zenaida Dove. GC, very few seen; one collected 
in deep forest. CB, one seen along roadside. GC, 6* 1 37 g. 

*Zenaida asiatica asiatica. White-winged Dove. GC, observed on only 4 
or 5 occasions ; one picked up as roadside kill. GC, 6* 1 34 g. 

*Columbina passerina insularis. Ground Dove. GC, common in suitable 
habitat. CB, abundant, even in semi-forested areas of the bluff. GC, 6* n=j, 
35.0-44.5 (38. 6±3. 8); $ 35.0, 35.0, 39.0 g. CB, <? 30.3, 32.5 ; $ 34.5, 3 5.0 g. 

Leptoptila jamaicensis collaris. White-bellied Dove. GC, 4 seen in limestone 
forest. A male and female, probably a pair, although taken 5 days apart, 
from 1 km S of Old Man Bay, were very fat and showed no moult. A female 
from 3 km NE of Half Moon Bay had almost no fat but was moulting. 
Birds from both sites had been feeding exclusively on the seeds of Anthurium. 
GC, (J 179;? 139, 164 g. 

*Amaf(pna leucocephala. Cuban Parrot. GC {A. I. caymamnsis), seen or heard 
E of Savannah at nearly every locality at which we spent any time, as well as 
occasionally at other places along the south road; no large flocks, 4-6 in- 
dividuals being the most seen at one time. CB (A. I. hesterna), a pair observed 
on 2 occasions in different parts of bluff forest; in both instances the birds 
were furtive and utterly silent, in marked contrast to their counterparts on 

343 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981 101(3)] 

Coccj^us americanus. Yellow-billed Cuckoo. GC, one dead on road and 
another seen in tree in abandoned pasture. 

Coccj^us minor. Mangrove Cuckoo. GC, one seen in Georgetown 11 
November. CB, one seen in bluff forest, 24 November. 

*Crotophaga ani. Smooth-billed Ani. GC, CB, common in disturbed areas. 

Tjto alba. Barn Owl. CB, probably several individuals flushed along 
roadsides almost every night; not seen on GC. 

*Cery/e alcjon. Belted Kingfisher. GC, one seen repeatedly at South Sound. 
CB, observed once. 

Sphjrapicus varius. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. GC, Wetmore noted this 
species on several occasions in 1972 and 1973. 

*Colaptes auratus gundlachii. Flicker. GC, common in limestone and man- 
grove forest (see Cruz & Johnston (1979) for details of the ecology of this 
subspecies). GC,c?n=5, 81. 5-97. 0(88. 5±6. 4); ? n=8, 83.0-93.5 (88.2^3.1) g. 

*Me/anerpes super ciliar is cajmanensis. West Indian Red-bellied Woodpecker. 
GC, common in limestone forest. GC, 6* n=6, 68.0-81.0 (73.2^4.6); ? n=7, 
63.o- 7 8.o(67.5±4.9)g. 

*Tjr annus caudifasciatus cajmanensis. Loggerhead Kingbird. GC, common. 
CB, perhaps less common than on GC. GC, o n=6, 38.5-52.0 (45.7^5.5); 
?n=5, 34.5-46.0(42. i±4-8)g. CB, o* 41-°, 47-° g- 

*Mjiarchus sagrae sagrae. Sagra's Flycatcher. GC, reasonably common in 
forest. GC, 6* 18.0, 19.5, 19.5, 20.0; ? 17.0, 18.0, 18.5 g. 

Contopus virens. Eastern Wood Pewee. GC, Wetmore saw individuals in 
shrubbery N of Pageant Beach Hotel on 13 February 1973 and near Barkers 
on 22 February 1973. Previously known from one specimen and 2 sight 
records (Johnston etal. 1971 ; Bond 1973). 

*Elaenia martinica cajmanensis. Caribbean Elaenia. GC, tolerably common. 
CB, abundant; by subjective impression it seemed that this species was many 
times more abundant on CB than on GC. Two individuals from each island 
had the abdominal cavity packed with nematodes of the genus Diplotriaena, 
which characteristically parasitizes passerines, infecting the lungs, air sacs, 
and body cavity. GC, 6* n=6, 23.0-28.5 (24.9^2.0); ? n=7, 20.0-27.0 
(22.2±2.5), sex? 21.5, 24.5 g. CB, $ n-6, 18.5-24.5 (21.1^2*4); $ 20.5, 
22.0 g. 

*Hirundo rustica. Barn swallow. GC, CB, good numbers on both islands. 

Tachjcineta bicolor. Tree Swallow. GC, Wetmore observed 5-20 individuals 
at Caribbean Cattle Farms on 12, 13, and 15 February 1973 and on 20 
February saw a dozen or more "on wires along the road midway to Old Man 
Village. Some in immature dress. The group kept changing, passing on to 
the east so that I believe they were in migration". The species is not listed 
for the Cayman Islands by Johnston et al. (1971), although Bond (1971b, 
1972) mentions other sight records. 

Stelgidopterjx ruficollis. Rough-winged Swallow. Several observed by 
Wetmore with Tree Swallows on 20 February 1973. 

*Mimus polyglottos orpheus. Mockingbird. GC, common in open or settled 
areas. CB, now common, apparently colonized CB about 1956 (Bond 1958). 
We preserved a skin from CB which is referable to M. p. orpheus, as would 
be expected. GC, c? 45.5; $42.0, 43.5 6*. CB,^ 50.5 g. 

*Dumetella carolinensis. Catbird. GC, somewhat scarce, perhaps no more 
than 6 seen. CB, seemingly more common than on GC, but this impression 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 98 1 101(3)] 344 

may have been influenced by the intensive efforts we made to "squeak up" 
Turdusplumbeus. GC, $ 34.0. CB,^ 39.5, 42.0 g. 

Turdus plumbeus coryi. Red-legged Thrush. CB, although W. W. Brown 
found this well-marked endemic subspecies in 191 1 to be "an extremely 
abundant bird" (Bangs 191 6: 314), in our experience it was decidedly un- 
common. By persistent "squeaking" we were able to secure 5 specimens, 
mainly in bluff" forest, but one was taken among the buildings at Stake Bay. 
Some were also seen along the road on the N side of the island and on the 
trans-island road in the middle of the island. We probably did not encounter 
more than 12 or 15 individuals. All 5 of those collected showed evidence 
of infectious disease. Two had scaly encrustations on the tarsi, and all had 
subdermal lesions c. 1.5 cm in diameter on the abdomen anterior to the anus. 
One had a similar lesion on the anterior part of the breast. An excellent op- 
portunity exists here to study the effects of disease on a small natural popu- 
lation of birds in a restricted area. CB, c?7i.o, 81.0, 84.0; 9 68.0, 73.0 g. 

Po/iopti/a caerulea. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher. GC, one observed by Wetmore, 
30 January 1972. 

Vireo c. crassirostris. Thick-billed Vireo. GC, scarce, only c. 5 observed. 
CB, decidedly more common than on GC. It is of interest that birds from GC 
weigh significantly less than those from CB, or from the Bahamas where 
the average weight of 9 individuals was 13.9 g (Steadman et al. 1980). GC, 
<J 11.0; ? 11.0, 11.0; sex? 11.5 g. CB, <J 13.0, 13.5, 13.5, 13.5; $ 12.5; sex? 

* Vireo magister caymanensis. Yucatan Vireo. GC, relatively common. GC 
c?n=5, 1 5.0-16.0(1 5. 6±o.4); $n=6, 13. 5-1 7.0 (15. 2 ±1.3); sex? 16.0 g. 

*Mmotilta varia. Black and White Warbler. GC, this species and Setophaga 
ruticilla were the most frequently encountered non-resident warblers in 
woodlands. CB, present in fair numbers. 

Helmitheros vermivorus. Worm-eating Warbler. GC, one bird netted on 1 7 
and 18 November. One observed by Wetmore on 28 January 1972. GC, 
<j 10.5 g. 

*Paru/a americana. Parula Warbler. GC, CB, scattered individuals seen in 
woodlands. GC, sex? 6.2 g. 

Dendroka petechia eoa. Yellow Warbler. GC, decidedly scarce, 3 taken and 
no more than 3 or 4 others seen; not observed on CB. One specimen was 
taken while foraging in wrack along the beach. Johnston et al. (1971 2152) 
describe this species as a "very common resident especially in mangrove 
swamp" on all 3 of the Cayman Islands. This was definitely not the case 
during our visit, suggesting that perhaps some of these supposedly resident 
birds are migratory. Wetmore's notes indicate that he did not encounter 
the species frequently, as in 1972 and 1973 he saw single individuals on 7 
occasions, a pair on another, and only once mentioned seeing "several". 
GC,c? 6.5; 99.5, io.og. 

Dendroka tigrina. Cape May Warbler. GC, group of 8-10 observed S of 
Grape Tree Point; one netted at South Sound and scattered others seen; few, 
if any, of these were adult males. CB, one female-plumaged bird netted 

*Dendroka dominka. Yellow-throated Warbler. GC, our only observation 
was of an individual taking insects while hovering in the corners of a window 
in a bank building in Georgetown, 1 5 November. 

345 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981 101(3)] 

*Dendroica discolor. Prairie Warbler. GC, not common; one taken and at 
least 2 others seen. CB, one or two seen. GC, ^6.5 g. 

*Dendroica vitellina. Vitelline Warbler. On both islands this species seemed 
more abundant than any one of the wintering species of woodland warblers. 
GC, (D. v. vitellina) <$ n=5, 6.5-7.0(6.64^0.2); $ n =5, 6.5-7.3 (6.8 ±0.3); sex? 
6.2, 6.5, 6.7, 6.8 g. CB, (D. v. crawfordi) $ n=8, 6.5-7.5 (6.8±o.4); $ 6.5, 
6.5, 7.0; sex? 6.5, 7.0 g. 

*Dendroica palm arum. Palm Warbler. GC, CB, very common in open areas 
and along roads; one particularly tame bird at our quarters on GC was ob- 
served to take nectar from a low-growing ornamental bush with small red 

Dendroica caerulescens. Black-throated Blue Warbler. CB, a few observed; 
none noted on GC. 

Dendroica coronata. Myrtle Warbler. GC, Wetmore found a flock of 15-20 
that at first kept peculiarly close to one another in a marshy tract near Bod- 
dentown on 6 February 1972. He noted it as "common" at the Caribbean 
Cattle Farms on 13 and 15 February 1972. Johnston et al. (1971) mention 
it as having once been common in winter but not "reported in recent years." 

*Seiurus aurocapillus . Ovenbird. GC, at least 2 at South Sound on 21 and 
22 November. CB, present in low numbers. GC, <J 20.5 g. 

*Seiurus noveboracensis. Northern Waterthrush. GC, at least 2 netted and 
2 others seen. GC, sex ? 1 5 .0 g. 

Geothlypis trichas. Yellowthroat. GC, CB, infrequent in grassy areas; no 
adult males seen on either island. 

Icteria virens. Yellow-breasted Chat. GC, Wetmore recorded "one seen 
clearly at the edge of a thicket near the Caribbean Dairy Farm, beyond 
Boddentown" on 14 February 1973. This species is known in the West 
Indies only as a vagrant to Grand Bahama, Bimini, and western Cuba (Bond 
1971a: 244). It is unlikely that someone with as many years field experience 
as Wetmore would mistake such a distinctive species. 

*Setophaga ruticilla. Redstart. GC, common in woodland. CB, commonest 
wintering warbler in woodlands, but only 1-2 adult males seen. 

*Coereba flaveola sharpei. Bananaquit. GC, CB, the most abundant bird. 
A few had enlarged gonads, the only birds of any species we collected that 
could possibly have been breeding. A few were heard singing on CB. In 
handling these birds one is impressed with how muscular and hardy they 
are in mist nets, in contrast to the Parulidae, with which Coereba has been 
associated by some authors. GC, $ n=9, 10. 0-13. 5 (ii.i±i.i); $ n=8, 
8.5-12.5 (io.3±i.i) g; sex? 9.5, 11.0, 13.5. CB, 3 11.0, 11.0, 11.0; $ 9.5, 
10. o; sex? 9.0 g. 

*Spindalis %ena salvini. Striped-headed Tanager. GC, at times difficult 
to find, but travels in flocks, when up to 12 may be encountered. GC, $ n= 10, 
24.0-31.0(26. 7±i. 8); ? n=6, 24.0-28.5 (26.24^1.7) g. 

*Quiscalus niger caymanensis. Greater Antillean Grackle. GC, common; 
a nocturnal roost was found in a thicket of mangrove saplings along the 
main road by South Sound. A different subspecies, O. n. coryi, is supposed 
to inhabit CB and Little Cayman. Despite a fair amount of searching, we 
did not find a single grackle on CB, although Martha B. Hays (pers. comm.) 
found the species to be common on Little Cayman in March 1980. Perhaps 
this species leaves CB to spend the fall and winter on Little Cayman, which 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 98 1 101(3)] 346 

has more suitable habitat for grackles than does CB. GC, {Q. n. caymanensis) 
6*11=10, 67.5-88.0 (75. 1 ±7.1) ;?n= 1 1, 5 1.0-64.0 (5 7.4±4.3)g. 

*Tiaris 0. olivacea. Yellow-faced Grassquit. GC, CB, only occasionally 
encountered, almost always on roadsides. GC, o* 9.0; ? 8.0, 8.7 g. 

Pheucticus ludovicianus. Rose-breated Grosbeak. CB, a male in changing 
plumage collected in bluff forest. CB, $ 47.0 g. 

*Passerina cyanea. Indigo Bunting. GC, one problematical bird seen in 
intermediate plumage. CB, one in brown plumage netted and released. 

*Melopyrrha nigra taylori. Cuban Bullfinch. GC, common in woodland. 
GC, 6* n=io, 16. 0-18. 5 (i7.2±i.o); $ n=6, 14.5-16.0 (15. 44^0.5); sex? 14.5, 
18.0, 18.0 g. 

Passerculus sandwichensis. Savanna Sparrow. GC, on 6 and 7 February 1972, 
Wetmore noted "single birds flushed ... in scattered open grassy areas". 
On 10 January 1975 he observed "several near the Cattle Farm". Only 2 
other records are given by Johnston et al. (1971). 

Acknowledgements: We are particularly grateful to Mr. B. D. Lauer, Principal Secretary 
for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Cayman Islands, and Mrs. D. Downer, for providing 
the necessary permits and greatly facilitating our research in many ways. Dr. M. E. C. 
Giglioli, Director, Mosquito Research and Control Unit, supplied us with considerable 
useful information and also with quarters on Cayman Brae, where we were also assisted 
by Mr. Floyd Banks. Our travel was financed in part by a fluid research grant from the 
Smithsonian Institution. Nematodes were identified by J. Ralph Lichtenfels, Animal 
Parasite Institute, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and seeds from Leptotila by Robert 
Read, Department of Botany, Smithsonian Institution. This is contribution Number 10 
of the Wetmore Papers, a project supported in part by trust funds from the Smithsonian 
Institution for completing unfinished work and study of undescribed material left by the 
late Alexander Wetmore. 

References : 

Bangs, O. 1916. A collection of birds from the Cayman Islands. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 

60(7): 303-320. 
Barlow, J. C. 1978. Records of migrants from Grand Cayman Island. Bull. Brit. Orti. CI. 

98(4): 144-146. 
Bond, J. 1958. Third supplement to the Check-list of Birds of the West Indies (1956). Acad. Nat. 

Sci. Philadelphia. 
— 1971a. Birds of the West Indies. Second edition (third American edition). Houghton 

Mifflin : Boston. 
— - 1971 b,i972, 1973, 1978. Supplements 16, 17, 18 and 22 respectively to the Check- 
list of Birds of the West Indies (19 ; 6). Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia. 
Cruz, A. & Johnston, D. W. 1979. Occurrence and feeding ecology of the Common 

Flicker on Grand Cayman Island. Condor 8(4) : 370-375 . 
Diamond, A. W. 1980. Ecology and species turnover of the birds of Little Cayman. In 

D. R. Stoddart and M. E. C. Giglioli (eds.) 'Geology and Ecology of Little Cayman'. 

Atoll Res. Bull. 241 : 141-164. 
Johnston, D. W. 1975. Ecological analysis of the Cayman Island avifauna. i?#//. Florida 

State Mus. Biol. Sci. 19(5): 235-300. 
Johnston, D. W., Blake, C. H. & Buden, D. W. 1971. Avifauna of the Cayman Islands. 

Quart. Jour. Florida Acad. Sci. 34(2): 142-156. 
Morgan, G. 1977. Late Pleistocene fossil vertebrates from the Cayman Islands, British 

West Indies. Unpublished Master's Thesis. University of Florida, Gainesville. 260 

Steadman, D. W., Olson, S. L., Barber, J. C, Meister, C. A. & Melville, M. E. 1980. 

Weights of some West Indian birds. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 100(2) : 155-158. 

Address: S. L. Olson, H. F. James, and C. A. Meister, Division of Birds, National Museum 
of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution. Washington, DC 20560, U.S.A. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 


[BulLB.O.C. ipfii: 101(3)] 

New races of montane birds from Kenya 
and southern Sudan 

by G. R. Cunningham-van Someren and Herbert Schijter 

Received 4 December 19 So 

In November-December 1978 and 1979 two joint collecting trips were made 
by the Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien (NMW) and the National Museum, 
Nairobi (NMN), Kenya, to the North Nandi Forest, Western Kenya, 
o° 20'N, 34 5 8'E at some 2400 m, 75 miles southwest of Mt Elgon. As far 
as we are aware no serious collecting has been undertaken in this isolated 
montane forest, though Sir Frederick Jackson (1938) collected in "Nandi", 
a locality "20 miles north of Kibigori Station" (on the Kenya railway, south 
of Kisumu on Lake Victoria). The forest of Nandi (= South Nandi), some 
60 miles south of North Nandi at 2130 m is now virtually destroyed and 
replaced by tea plantations. 

Map showing majority of locations mentioned in text. 

The NMN collection includes series taken in 1962 on Mt Loima, Muru- 
asigar, west of Lake Turkana, near the Uganda border and Mt Kadam. Mt 
Loima rises to 2100 m and is well forested at the upper levels. These and the 
North Nandi series have been compared with examples from Ethiopia, 
Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and in some cases with material from Rwanda 
and Zaire. For the loan of comparative material we wish to thank the British 
Museum (Natural History), Tring (BMNH, I. C. J. Galbraith), the Field 
Museum of Natural History, Chicago (FMNH, D. E. Willard), the Institute 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 348 

Royal des Sciences Naturelles de Belgique (IRSNB, A. Prigogine), the Ameri- 
can Museum of Natural History, New York (AMNH, L. L. Short), the Los 
Angeles County Museum, Los Angeles (LACM, R. Schreiber), and The 
Museum Alexander Koenig, Bonn (MAKB, H. E. Wolters). Wings were 
measured as flattened chords, all measurements being in mm. Bill measure- 
ments were of the exposed culmen. Colour references are Ridgway (19 12) 
"Color Standards and Nomenclature", Washington. 

turdus abyssinicus Olive Thrush 

When specimens were set out in series by localities to take account of the 
3 major plumage characters, throat/chest, flanks/belly and back colours, 
it was apparent that there was a sharp division between extremely pale birds 
from Morongole, Loima, Karissia and the Nguruman Range and those from 
other areas. Pale, but less so, and distinct from typical abyssinicus were 
examples from the Imatong Mts, grading through Mt Kulal, Marsabit, 
Lololokwi (Uraguess) to a darker complex from North Nandi, Mt Elgon, 
Mt Kenya, Aberdare Range, Mau and Londiani, the last locality producing 
the darkest specimens overall. A distinctly "brown" group occurs in the 
Chyulu Range, with deckeni of Kilimanjaro dark and baraka from Ruwen- 
zori, Uganda the darkest. Nevertheless there are intergrades. 

White (1962) includes in the range of abyssinicus Mt Elgon, the Kenya 
Highlands to Londiani, south to Loliondo, Tanzania, but he omits mention 
of the pale polius from Mt Marsabit and Mt Lololokwi. Sclater (1930) also 
did not recognise polius but the race is upheld by Friedmann (Benson 1946). 
Van Someren (1939) included Mt Kulal, Marsabit and Mt Nyiru in the range 
of polius and in addition recognised the race elgonensis, the range of the latter 
including Cherangani Range, Mau, Mt Kenya, Aberdare Range and (ac- 
cording to Moreau, in van Someren 1939) Longido and Kitumbeini in 
Tanzania. Friedmann (1966) accepted both polius and elgonensis as distinct 
from abyssinicus but considered (1969) Mt Nyiru birds to be abyssinicus to- 
gether with (1967) pale birds from the Karissia Hills. Our Karissia speci- 
mens are however clearly not abyssinicus. We recognise abyssinicus from 
Ethiopia but also take note of birds from Mega, Southern Ethiopia, which 
Benson (1946) placed near polius and with which we tentatively associate 
birds from Kulal, Marsabit and from the type locality, Lololokwi. (Mega 
birds have not been seen by us.) We recognise elgonensis and consider 
provisionally that its range includes Cherangani Range, Mt Kenya, Aberdare 
and possibly the Mau. We accept chyuluensis as being quite distinct and al- 
together browner than other races but approaching deckeni. Specimens from 
the Imatong we provisionally place with abyssinicus. Three specimens in 
NMN from Londiani are puzzling since they so nearly resemble the Mau 
population ( ? elgonensis), yet nearly match baraka of the Ruwenzori Range, 
and are somewhat similar to oldeani of the Crater Highlands of Tanzania. 
We find that birds from the North Nandi and Mt Loima are distinct dif- 
fering from all other races. 

We now propose 2 new subspecies. 

Turdus abyssinicus fuscatus subsp. nov. 

Holotype: 6* Reg. No. 17597/808 in National Museum, Kenya. Field No. 
299. Collected on track Kipsamoiti-Kamwega, North Nandi Forest, Western 

349 [Bull.B.O.C. ipfii: 101(3)] 

Kenya, o° 2o'N, 34 58'E, at 2133 m by Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien 
and National Museum, Kenya joint expedition on 19.xi.1978. 

Description: Throat to breast Hair Brown, throat with a few dark streaks. 
Undertail coverts and thighs grey with white central shaft. Head and back, 
Blackish Brown. Wings slightly blacker, tail black. Bill orange, legs dirty 
orange. Iris dark brown. Wing 109.0 mm, tail 98.0 mm. Bill 21.0 mm. 

The darkest, blackest-backed and dark chested form amongst Kenya 
montane forest populations. Considerably darker than eigonensis from nearby 
Mt Elgon. Chest is greyer, flanks paler but back darker than nominate 

Weight and measurements: Holotype weighed 60.5 g. Paratypes: o* Reg. No. 
17600/808, wing 109.0 mm, weight 67.0 g; 6* Reg. No. 17598/808, wing 
1 12.0 mm, weight 58.0 g; ? Reg. No. 17601/808, wing 117.0 mm, weight 
65.5 g; ? Reg. No. 17602/808, wing 107.0 mm, weight 57.0 g; ? Reg. No. 
17599/808, wing 102.0 mm, weight 62.0 g. All collected at the same site as 
the holotype between i2.xi. and 6.xii. 1978. All in NMN. In 1979, 2 more 
specimens which were secured in the same forest but further south near 
Chemisia, o° 1 5 'N, 3 5 ° 00 'E, match the type series. 

Turdus abyssinicus mwaki subsp. nov. 
Holotype: $ Reg. No. 12253/808, in National Museum, Nairobi, Kenya. 
Collected on Mt. Loima, Muruasigar, West Turkana, Kenya, 3 02 'N, 35 ° 
oo'E, at 2133 m on 8.XL1962 by Joseph Mwaki for A. D. Forbes-Watson. 

Description: Throat to breast Mouse Grey, slightly more darkly streaked 
on throat. Flanks and belly Tawny Olive, some white towards the crissum. 
Head, back and outer web of wings, Fuscous. Rump paler grey. Tail 
slightly darker. Under-tail coverts white edged grey. Legs Orange. Bill 

Weight and measurements: Wing 11 5.0 mm, tail 93.0 mm, bill 21.0 mm. 
Paratypes: 12 6* $ and 3 $? collected on Mt Loima between 22.x. and 8.xi.i962 
by Joseph Mwaki. Wings: #<?, 104, 105, 105, 108, 109, 109, no, in, 112, 113, 
and 1 14.0 mm, ?$ 101, in and 1 17.0 mm. All in NMN. 

The palest form on ventral and dorsal surfaces and closest to polius of 
Mearns (191 3) is from Lololokwi (Uraguess) and is far less richly coloured 
than typical abyssinicus. With this race we include 2 $& from Morongole, 
Eastern Uganda at 3 49'N, 34 20'E at 2538 m, taken by the Oxford Uni- 
versity Expedition on 4 and 6.ix.i966, in NMN, with wings of 1 10 and 1 14.0 
mm. Also associated are 3 specimens collected by A. L. Archer on 22.ix.1974 
from Karissia Hills, Kenya, at c. 1830 m: 2 $<$ with wings 105 and 107.0 mm 
and one 9 with wing 103.0 mm. These 3 localities are isolated ranges. It is 
possible that Friedmann's (1966) specimens from Mt Moroto, Uganda at 
c. 2640 m, which he referred to as polius, are really examples of this new race. 
We consider that birds from the other isolated ranges east of the Rift Valley 
are polius. 

Amongst specimens loaned by the BMNH was one collected in 1900 
by W. G. Doggett for Sir Harry Johnston (field no. 106), labelled "Entebbe", 
April. The locality however should read N'dabibi, which is northwest of 
Lake Naivasha, Kenya. N'dabibi, in 1900 was within the Uganda Pro- 

[Bull.BD.C. 1981: 101(3)] 35o 

This new race is named for Joseph Mwaki, collector and skinner for many 
years for A. D. Forbes- Watson and later for the NMN. 

pogonocichla stellata White-starred Forest Robin 

While working over the collections in order to establish the identity of 
our specimens of this species from the North Nandi, which we naturally at 
first thought would be near elgonensis of Ogilvie-Grant (191 1) from Mt 
Elgon, our birds proved to have black and yellow tails and not the all-black 
tail of the adult of the Mt Elgon race. We also had some comparative 
material from the Imatong Mts, Southern Sudan, by courtesy of Major 
Melvin Traylor (FMNH). Cave & MacDonald (1955) referred their birds 
from the Imatong to the race guttifer Reichenow & Neumann (1895) from 
Mt. Kilimanjaro. However FMNH Imatong birds differ markedly from all 
other forms occurring in Eastern Africa. Moreau (1951b) included the Ima- 
tong group on the Sudan-Uganda border in the range of keniensis of Mearns, 
191 1, as well as Mt Nyiru and Kulal, while Friedmann & Stager (1969) re- 
ferred their Mt Nyiru birds to guttifer. Having put out a series of all pre- 
sumed races, intergrades or intermediate forms in geographical order it is 
quite clear to us that birds from the Imatong are not guttifer, keniensis or 
elgonensis, and they also differ from specimens from Mt. Kulal. White (1962) 
on the other hand, includes Imatong birds along with Kulal and Garguess 
and the Kenya Highlands under intensa of Sharpe, 1901 . 

In view of the confusion over the validity and distribution of the races 
of P. stellata in Eastern Africa we propose to give these pale yellow-bellied 
birds from the Imatong subspecific status as 

Pogonocichla stellata pallidirlava subsp. nov. 

Holotype: 6*, Reg. No. 298521 in Field Museum of Natural History, Chi- 
cago, U.S.A. Collected at Gilo, Imatong Mountains, Southern Sudan, 
4 o2'N, 32 51'E, at 2100 m, by M. Traylor on 3.111.1977. 

Description: Head, ear coverts, throat, Dark Plumbeous. White supra- 
orbital spot, large. Throat spot white, outlined in black. Breast to belly and 
flanks, undertail coverts all Primuline Yellow. Paler than birds from Mt 
Kulal, Kenya Highlands to Tanzania and the races elgonensis, keniensis, mac- 
arthuri, he Her i, orientalis and guttifer. Tail jet black with Primuline Yellow 
base to all rectrices save the central pair. Black tips of 11. 0-13.0 mm on the 
inner webs. Tails brighter yellow than in other races, not ochraceous. Back 
Dark Citrine, with Primuline Yellow rump. Wings, primaries and secon- 
daries dark Purplish Grey. Secondaries, outer webs blue-grey edged olive. 
Coverts faintly edged blue-grey and olive tipped. Outer webs of primaries 
light blue-grey. 

Weight and measurements: Wing 77.0 mm, tail 60.0 mm, bill 12.0 mm. Para- 
types: 6* Reg. No. 2985 15, wing 71.5 mm, weight 18.0 g; ? Reg. No. 298520, 
wing 71.5 mm, weight 18.0 g; ? Reg. No. 298519, wing 69.0 mm, weight 
18.0 g; Unsexed Reg. No. 298522, wing 72.5 mm, weight 15.8 g; Unsexed, 
Reg. No. 298518, wing 71.5 mm, weight 17.0 g. All from Gilo, in FMNH, 
collected around the same date as the holotype. In addition there is one ? No. 
3003, topotype, collected Gilo, by G. Nikolaus, in NMN, win£ 
73.0 mm, weight 16.5 g. The very pale yellow of the ventral surface and th( 

35i [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(3)] 

very black and Primuline Yellow tail of this race distinguishes it from all 
other East African races. 

alethe poliocephala Brown-chested Alethe 

Comparative material of this species in NMN includes topotypical speci- 
mens of the race ufipae from Mbisi, Ufipa, southwest Tanzania ; akeleyae from 
Burguret, Meru and Mt Kenya; carruthersi from Toro, Mpanga and Mabira 
Forests of Uganda; a series from the low Bwamba Forest (Ruwenzori- 
Semliki), Uganda; some from Kakamega Forest, Western Kenya; and speci- 
mens from Mt Elgon. We have compared these with our series from the 
North Nandi Forest and Mt Imatong of Southern Sudan. It is at once clear 
that birds from the latter 2 localities do not match any described race. 

Chapin (1953) lists carruthersi as from Toro, Beni (Zaire), and the Lotti 
forest of the Imatong, while Cave & MacDonald (195 5) also refer the Sudan 
birds to carruthersi. Jackson (1938) gives the range of carruthersi as "east to 
Nandi and slopes of Mt. Elgon". Our series does not substantiate this wide 
distribution and we suggest that carruthersi should be maintained for birds of 
the lower altitudes in Uganda and western populations generally; and that 
akeleyae should be the race confined to the Kenya Highlands (except Mt. 
Elgon and the forest of Kakamega). The population in the North Nandi 
forest does not agree with birds from nearby Mt. Elgon or Kakamega, the 
Kakamega birds being nearer to carruthersi and the Mt. Elgon birds inter- 
mediate. However, though we only have 2 specimens from which to judge, 
they do not match akeleyae either. The North Nandi birds compared with 
carruthersi are altogether paler, duskier on the underside with backs darker 
and not so rich brown. In akeleyae, the marked chestband separates this from 
the other races. Imatong birds are close to those from North Nandi, but are 
easily separable, having an almost white belly, dark black heads and more 
olive backs with a buff chestband. 

We propose to assign the North Nandi birds to a new race. 

Alethe poliocephala nandensis subsp. nov. 

Holotype: 6* Reg. No. 17700/778, Field No. 368, in National Museum, 
Nairobi, Kenya. Collected on the track from Kamwega to Kipsamoiti, 
North Nandi Forest, o° 20'N, 34 58'E, at 2133 m by Naturhistorisches 
Museum, Wien and National Museum, Kenya joint expedition on 22.xi.1978. 

Description: Head Sooty Black. Black pre-ocular spot and grey supercillium. 
Nape, back to rump Brussels Brown, more olive than Imatong birds. Tail 
black. Wings fuscous, primaries with outer web narrowly edged brown. 
Secondaries outer webs Brussels Brown, faintly cross barred. Coverts, edged 
and tipped Brussels Brown. Throat white, faint breast band of Deep Olive 
Buff, paler than the Imatong birds. Belly white faintly tinged creamy. Flanks 
greyish, paler than Imatong birds. 

Distinguished by its lack of a marked chestband from akeleyae and by the 
pale chestband of carruthersi and from both by the tone of brown of the 

Weight and measurements: wing, 88.5 mm, tail, 57.0 mm, bill, 11.5 mm. In 
the field, iris brown, bill black, feet pinkish-grey. Weight 27.0 g. Paratypes: 
taken in the same area over the period 9«xi to 20.iii.1978: 25 S3 wings mean 

[BulI.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(3)] 3 5 2 

86.0 (80.5-91) mm, 15 ??, wings 84.83 (82.0-90.0) mm and 10 sub-adult. 
Mean weights of adult c?6\ 27.8 (25.5-32.5) g and of adult $? 28.5 (26.0- 

Juvenile I sub-adult: one North Nandi juvenile just moulting its sub-adult 
plumage is very much darker than the comparable stage of akelejae, the 
spots being rufous with a broad base and an edge of jet black, whereas 
akelejae is a light buff, the spots with darker brown edges and all spots less 
bold and narrower. 

A small series taken in 1979 in the same forest, but further south near 
Chemisia, o° 15'N, 35 ° 00 'E, match the type series. Some specimens of the 
2 collections will be deposited in the Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien. 

Specimens from the Imatong Mountains, Southern Sudan, with which 
nandensis has been compared, are to us distinct and so we propose a new race. 

Alethe poliocephala giloensis subsp. nov. 
Holotype: cJ, Reg. No. 298584, in Field Museum of Natural History, 
Chicago. Collected at Gilo, Imatong Mountain, Southern Sudan, 4 02 'N, 
3 2 5i'E, at 2100 m, by R. Glen on 21.ii.1977. 

Description: Top of head and below eye to chin Blackish Brown. Ear 
coverts paler, browner. Bill black. Grey supercillium. Back Cinnamon 
Brown to rump. Tail Dull Fuscous. Wings Fuscous, primaries narrowly 
edged Cinnamon, secondaries outer web Cinnamon, lightly transversely 
barred. Throat white. Upper breast fairly distinct band of Light Drab. 
Belly lightly washed grey-brown. Flanks darker greyish brown. Undertail 
coverts dusky white. Collectors notes: Iris, red-brown. Feet, flesh with 
brown wash on scales. 

Weight and measurements: Wing 85.5 mm, tail 57.0 mm, bill 13.0 mm. 
Weight 27.0 g. Paratypes: collected in the same area as holotype between 
1 9-2 1. ii. 1 977: $ Reg. No. 298585, wing 86.0 mm; <J Reg. No. 298579, wing 
85.0 mm; $ Reg. No. 298577, wing 86.0 mm; cJ Reg. No. 298582, wing 
86.5 mm; c? Reg. No. 298586, wing 86.0 mm. 

Sub-adult: $ Reg. No. 298578, wing 85.0 mm. $ Reg. No. 298588, wing 
83.5 mm. Females do not differ from males. 

Additional specimens, one topotypical c? Gilo, 4.XL1978, G. Nikolaus, in 
NMN and z<$<$ from Gilo, taken 3-4J.1978 in Museum A. Koenig, Bonn. 

alcippe abyssinica Abyssinian Hill Babbler 
This is a difficult and confusing species as there are so many combinations 
of different degrees of colour in the plumage of the head, back and under- 
pays, with many intergrading forms in East African montane populations. 

White (1962) recognised 3 races from within East Africa: the very distinct 
atriceps, which Deignan {in Peters 1964) regarded as a separate species, 
stierlingi from Tanzania and all the other East African races Deignan commits 
to abyssinica, including kilimensis and chyulu Moreau (1951a) recognised 
atriceps and stierlingi but thought chyulu might be a good race. Friedmann & 
Stager (1969) assigned specimens from Mt Nyiru, Northern Kenya to 
abyssinica, but they also thought that chyulu might be admissible. We now 
find we have a very distinct series from the North Nandi montane forest 
and from Mt Loima Forest. They are readibly separable from specimens 

353 [Bull.B.O.C. ipSi: 101(3)] 

from the rest of East African Highlands, in which of course there are many 
intergrades ; and, indeed, with more material it might be possible to separate 
populations from each of the "montane islands". However, we have no 
hesitation in describing the following 2 new races : — 

Alcippe abyssinica poliothorax subsp. nov. 

Holotype: 6* Reg. No. 17750/823, Field No. 163, in National Museum, 
Nairobi. Collected on track Kamwega-Kipsamoiti, North Nandi Forest, 
Kenya, o° 2o'N, 34 5 8 'E at 2133 m by Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien and 
National Museum, Kenya Joint Expedition on 15.xi.1978. The gonads were 

Description: Head, frons to nape and ear coverts dull Gull Grey, Bill, 
upper light pale horn, paler at the tomium; lower, pale horn with pale 
tomium. Back to rump Dresden Brown, browner, darker than birds from 
Mt Loima. Tail Fuscous, outer webs Dresden Brown. Wings Fuscous with 
outer webs Dresden Brown except outer four primaries which are narrowly 
edged pale. Throat and upper breast Light Neutral Grey, paler on the belly. 
Flanks Dark Olive. These birds viewed on the ventral surface appear almost 
blue-grey compared with other specimens. 

Weight and measurements: Wing 68.0 mm, tail 58.0 mm, bill 11.0 mm. 
Paratypes: collected at the same place between cj.xi and 20.xii.1978, 23 $& 
and 15 $$. Wings, S<$ mean 66.4 (62.0-71.0) mm with 50% between 65.0- 
68.0 mm; $9, mean 65.3 (63.0-68.0). Another series of 10 specimens taken 
in 1979 in the same forest but further south near Chemisia, o° 15'N, 35 ° E, 
match the type series. Set out in series from most localities in East Africa, the 
very pale ventral surface readily distinguishes this race. 

Alcippe abyssinica loima subsp. nov. 

Holotype: 6* Reg. No. 12371/823, in National Museum, Nairobi. Collected 
on Mt. Loima, Muruasigar, West Turkana, Kenya, 3 02 'N, 35 00 'E at 
2100 m by Joseph Mwaki for A. D. Forbes-Watson, on 13.X.1962. 

Description: Head, frons to nape and ear coverts Deep Quaker Drab. Bill 
as in A., a. poliothorax. Back to rump Antique Brown. Tail Fuscous with 
outer webs Antique Brown. Wings Fuscous with outer webs of primaries 
and secondaries Antique Brown narrowly edged pale, almost white. Throat 
and upper breast Gull Grey. Chin with a few faint white streaks. Belly paler 
than breast. Flanks very pale Olive. Overall on the breast and belly birds are 
paler than examples from the Kenya Highlands, North Nandi and Chyulu 

Weight and measurements: Wing 68.5 mm, tail 65.0 mm, bill 11.0 mm. 
Paratypes: 4<?6* and 7 $$ collected at the same site as the holotype between 
22.x and 8.xi.i962 by J. Mwaki. 4 $S wings mean 70.2 (68.5-70.0) mm, 
7 9$ wings mean 68.8 (66.0-71.0) mm. 

sheppardia aequatorialis Equatorial Akalat 

Our fine series from the North Nandi Forest has been compared with 

examples from the slightly lower Kakamega Forest and with specimens from 

the Chepalunga Forest, West Mau (some 3 5 miles from Kericho), as well as 

with examples from Uganda and Rwanda. Set out in series by locality it was 

[BulLB.O.C. 1981 101(3)] 354 

obvious that the North Nandi birds, though superficially similar in general 
colouration, differed considerably from other races, being "golden-yellow" 
rather than brown, with a conspicuous pale throat. Grades of colour matched 
against Ridgway "Color Standards" showed differences are as follows: — 

Locality Throat Breast Flanks 

North Nandi Antimony Yellow Yellow Ochre Raw Sienna 

Kakamega Ochraceous Orange Ochre Orange Mars Yellow 

Chepalunga Deep Chrome Mars Yellow Raw Sienna 

White (1962) only admits one race from the Imatong, acholiensis, consider- 
ing all other populations to be nominate aequatorials. The North Nandi birds 
are so distinct we propose to give them subspecific status as : — 

Sheppardia aequatorialis pallidigularis subsp. nov. 

Holotype: 6* Reg. No. 17611, Field No. 177, in National Museum, Nairobi, 
collected on track Kamwega-Kipsamoiti, North Nandi Forest, Kenya, 
o° 2o'N, 34 5 8'E, at 2133 m by Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien and 
National Museum, Kenya Joint Expedition on 1 5.XL1978. 

Description: Crown, head and back dark olive or Medal Bronze. Tail 
slightly rufous, upper tail coverts more rufous. Undertail coverts Ochraceous. 
Reduced white pre-ocular spot. Faint grey supercillium shading to grey at 
the ear. Throat conspicuously pale, Antimony Yellow, contrasting strongly 
with the Yellow Ochre of the upper breast. Flanks Raw Sienna. Belly faintly 
yellow tinged white. Soft parts: iris very dark brown, bill dark horn; legs 
blueish-grey. Testes enlarged. Altogether more "golden-yellow" on the 
underside than nominate aequatorialis from Chepalunga (near type locality). 
Yellower than examples from Kakamega, which are darker, more brown 
than golden and without the distinct pale throat. 

Weight and measurements: Wing 71.0 mm, tail 49.0 mm, bill 11.0 mm. 
Weight 16.0 g. Paratypes: 27 S3 and 19$$, all from the same locality as the 
holotype, collected between 9»xi- 20.xii.1978. Wings, 3d, mean 67.3 (63.0- 
71.0) mm with 40% at 70.0 and over; $$ mean 65.7 (63.0-71.0) mm. Weights 
<$<3 mean 15.5 (i4.o-i7.o)g. $$ mean 14.8 (11. 0-16. 5) g. 

Another series of 1 8 specimens taken in 1979 in the same forest but further 
south near Chemisia, o° 1 5 'N, 3 5 ° 00 'E, match the type series. 

Juveniles: Fledglings just assuming their first plumage are heavily spotted 

and spangled with Light Ochre on a darker Olive-Brown background, while 

the background of the chest is almost black, with feather tips arrow-marked 

in ochre. Belly washed with grey and flanks assuming the tawny ochre. 

Tails not as rufous as in adults. Upper mandible pale horn and lower dirty 

yellow with a slight dark tip. Gape yellow. The juvenile only gradually 

assumes the pale yellower gular spot. When slightly older the juvenile has a 

very distinct yellow throat and is still spangled on the head and back, with 

wing coverts tipped ochreous, the belly whiter and the flanks richer ochreous 

than the adult. Bill is then black, the chestband has lost the black background 

and is more rufous, with pale tips to the feathers. . . . 

r r (to be continued) 


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ISSN 0007-1595 

Bulletin of the 

British Ornithologists' Club 

Ed/ted by 
Dr. J. F. MONK 

Volume 101 No. 4 

December 1 981 


Tuesday, 12 January 1982 in the Senior Common Room, South Side, 
Imperial College, Prince's Gardens, S.W.7 at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m. Dr T. J. 
Seller of the Department of Zoology and Applied Entomology of Imperial 
College will speak on Are Bullfinches and Fruit Crops really incompatible? Those 
wishing to attend should send their acceptance with a cheque for £5.50 a 
person to the Hon. Secretary at 2 Chestnut Lane, Sevenoaks, Kent TNi 3 3 AR 
(telephone Sevenoaks 07 3250313) to arrive not later than first post on Thurs- 
day, 7 January. 

Tuesday, 2 March 1982 at the some venue and time, Professor Gordon 
H. Orians, Director of the Institute of Environmental Studies, the University 
of Washington, widely known for his ecological studies, will speak on 
some aspects of his work on icterid blackbirds in Mates and Real Estate in 
Blackbird Social Systems. Those wishing to attend should send their accept- 
ance with a cheque for £5.50 to the Hon. Secretary (address above) to arrive 
not later than first post on Thursday, 2 5 February. 

Tuesday, 18 May 1982 at the same venue and time Mr Peter Conder, 
O.B.E., will speak on Wetlands in Sind. The Annual General Meeting will be 
held at the same place at 6 p.m. 

Tuesday, 20 July 1982 Mr T. M. Gullick will speak on Birds in central 

Tuesday, 28 September 1982 Dr David Houston will speak on Vultures. 

Many copies of the Bulletin must get thrown away annually 
by Members. This is extremely wasteful of stock, which the 
Club would welcome. Please send all unwanted copies, and 
ask your executors to do the same, to the Hon. Treasurer at 
53 Osterley Road, Isleworth, Middlesex TW7 4PW at any 
time. Postage will be refunded if requested. 


D. R. Calder {Chairman) B. Gray ( Vice-Chairman) 

R. E. F. Peal {Hon. Secretary) Mrs. D. M. Bradley {Hon. Treasurer) 

Dr. J. F. Monk {Editor) R. D. Chancellor 

J. G. Parker Revd. G. K. McCulloch, O.B.E. 

R. A. N. Croucher 

British Ornithologists' Club 198 1 

35, '• «IST. tffy.B.O.C. 19S1: 101(4)] 

Bulletin of the L ~ 6JA Nm2 



Vol. 1 01 No. 4 Published : 1 8 December 1 981 

The seven hundred and thirty-sixth Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday 15 September 198 1 at 
7 p.m. The attendance was 19 Members and 8 guests. 

Members present were: B. GRAY {Chairman), Major N. A. G. H. BEAL, R.M., K. F, 
S. A. H. STATHAM, C. E. WHEELER and Lieut.-Col. T. C. WHITE. 

Guests present were: Miss M. BARRY, D. BRADLEY, Miss D. BURGESS, Miss 

Mr C. J. Mead gave an illustrated address on "Autumn birds in Texas". He described 
the habitats which he had visited and the birds there. He showed excellent slides of a large 
number of these species photographed by him in the hand or in the field. 

The seven hundred and thirty-seventh Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday 17 November 198 1 at 
7 p.m. The attendance was 29 Members and 20 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER {Chairman), Mrs S. VERE BENSON, K. F. 
J. G. PARKER, R. E. F. PEAL, P. S. REDMAN, P. J. SELLAR, Professor G. H. N. 

Guests present were: Miss M. BARRY, Mrs G. BEVEN, Miss D. BURGESS, P. 

Mr Peter Hayman spoke on "Seabirds" and described those which he had seen in the 
South Atlantic and Pacific. He dealt especially with the distinctive differences in flight in 
otherwise similar species (mostly Procellariiformes), sufficient to identify them in the air. 
These were due to dissimilarities in the proportions of the bodies of the birds, which raised 
taxonomic problems of much interest, which he is continuing to investigate. He showed 
slides to illustrate his address. 

New races of montane birds from Kenya 
and southern Sudan 

by G. R. Cunningham-van Someren and Herbert Schifter 

Received 4 December 1980 
cossypha cyanocampter Blue-shouldered Robin Chat 

Our first series, taken in 1978, of this far from common bird consisted of 
6 $S, 3 $$, 2 sub-adults and an immature ? from North Nandi. In 1979 a 
further 12 specimens were secured in the southern portion of the forest. 
These have been compared with material from Kakamega Forest, Uganda 

[Bull.B.O. C. 19 Si: i o 1(4)] 356 

and Rwanda. The North Nandi birds are quite distinct, being generally paler 
and yellower than other races. Through the kindness of Major Melvin 
Tray lor we have received a $ (wing 84.0 mm) and $ (wing 72.0 mm) collected 
at Giloon, the Imatong Mountains, Southern Sudan, 4 02 'N, 32 5i'E at 
2100 m in February 1977. These are referred to as bartteloti by Cave & 
MacDonald (1955). However they are much paler altogether than examples 
of bartteloti from elsewhere. White (1962) includes the Imatong Mountains 
within the range of bartteloti and notes "darker rufous below" for that race. 
With more material this very isolated population of the Imatong might be 
deserving of racial recognition. 

Kenya specimens have in the past been referred to bartteloti (van Someren 
1932; Jackson 1938 and more recently Friedmann & Williams 1970 and 
Ripley & Bond 1971) and more particularly those from Kakamega and 
Uganda. Rwanda specimens are much paler than those from Kakamega and 
Uganda, nearer to the North Nandi specimens, but they are referred to 
nevertheless as bartteloti by Prigogine (1971). White (1962) included West 
Kenya within the range of bartteloti. 

For the North Nandi birds we propose a new race : — 

Cossypha cyanocampter pallidiventris subsp. nov. 

Holotype: adult <? Reg. No. 17636/796, in National Museum, Nairobi, 
Kenya, Field No. 276. Collected on track Kamwega-Kipsamoiti, North 
Nandi Forest, Kenya, o° 20'N, 34 58'E at 2133 m by Naturhistorisches 
Museum, Wien and National Museum, Kenya Joint Expedition on i7.xi. 
1978. Gonads enlarged. 

Description: Crown and cheeks black with white supercillium to nape. 
Back Slate Colour with distinct blue edges to feathers. Rump Dark Olive. 
Thighs and undertail coverts Honey Yellow. Tail, central pair rectrices 
black, others with inner web rufous, outer black. Wings black, outer web of 
primaries and secondaries narrowly edged blue. Angle of wing and lesser 
wing coverts Yale Blue. Throat and upper breast and flanks Honey Yellow 
to Yellow Ochre at flanks. Paler mid-breast to belly Deep Colonial Buff to 
nearly white at crissum. Iris dark brown. Bill black. Legs pinkish-grey to 
mauve. Altogether paler, yellower than bartteloti as represented by birds 
from Kakamega and Uganda and paler than Rwanda examples. Kakamega 
and Uganda specimens are Antimony Yellow on throat to Yellow Ochre on 
breast and the belly is not so white but buffy tinged. 

Sub-adults: still with a few buff-tipped feathers on coverts, more olive on 
the back than adults and slightly more ochreous on the breast and flanks, 
but white on the lower belly to crissum. Backs of males are slightly darker 
than females. 

Weight and measurements: Wing 85.0 mm, tail 75.0 mm, bill 13.0 mm. 
Weight 32.0 g. Paratypes: collected at the same site as the holotype between 
9.xi and 20.xii.1978. Wings 6*c?, mean 82.4 (81.0-84.0) mm; $$ mean 76.1 
(73.0-79.0) mm; sub-adults 74.0 & 79.0 mm. Weights, (?<?, mean 29.3 
(27.0-32.0) g. $?, mean 27.2 (24.4-30.5) g. Sub-adults, 29.0 & 30.0 g. 

In addition to the above we have a <? topotype taken in another section of 
the North Nandi Forest by V. C. Fayad on 8.1.1978 with wing 85.0 mm and 
weight 30.0 g. The finding of C. cyanocampter in the North Nandi represents a 
slight eastward extension of range and in altitude. 

3 5 7 [Bull.B.O.C. 198 1 : 101(4)] 

neocossyphus poensis White-tailed Ant-Thrush 

White (1962) does not include any locality in Kenya for this species. 
Similarly there is no plot shown for Kenya in Hall & Moreau (1970). 
Zimmerman & Mumford (1965) discuss 3 specimens taken in Kakamega 
Forest, Western Kenya in 1963 and write "do not agree particularly well with 
specimens of praepectoralis or of the nominate race, their colouration is 
seemingly somewhat intermediate between the two". Their wings 105.0, 
109.0 and 110.0 mm fall within the range of praepectoralis. Ripley & Bond 
(1971) record N. poensis erroneously "for the first time", based on birds from 
Kakamega, 1 964-1 966. 

Zimmerman (1972), who had 8 Kakamega examples, wrote "viewed as a 
series, Kakamega birds are darker ventrally, with rather distinct olive upper 
breast and sides of chest and a greyer throat. The undertail coverts tend to 
be rather more heavily streaked and the spot on the outer rectrix is consider- 
ably larger in most Kakamega birds". The average length of the white tail 
spot was 33.6 for c?6* and 34.3 mm for ?$. In 5 Kakamega examples in the 
NMN these spots measure 31.0 and 32.0 mm for <J<? and 31.0, 31.0 and 
34.0 mm for ?$. This character is evidently unreliable for racial distinction 
and similarly the amount of white on the outer tail feathers (White 1962), as 
one North Nandi specimen has one outer rectrix with white on the outer 

If all Uganda birds we. praepectoralis (see Keith et al. (1969) for the Kayonsa 
(Impenetrable) Forest and Friedmann & Williams (1969, '70, '71, '73) for 
the Malabigambo, Kalinzu, Bwamba and Budongo Forests), then we would 
agree with Zimmerman (1972) that the Kakamega birds differ in the way he 
describes, while the North Nandi examples differ considerably from the 
Kakamega series and from praepectoralis. 

The NMN holds 5 Kakamega specimens which we now regard as a good 
race and we therefore propose that they be known as : — 

Neocossyphus poensis kakamegoes subsp. nov. 

Holotype: <$ Reg. No. 12321/802 in National Museum, Nairobi, Kenya, 
collected in Kakamega Forest near Forest Station, o° i5'N, 34 50'E, on 
11.xii.1966 by I. Bampton. 

Description: Head, with scaly appearance, and back Chaetura Drab. Tail 
black, white spot on tail 31.0 mm. Throat Buffy Brown, sharply defined 
from upper breast which is near Brownish Olive. Lower breast Tawny 
Olive, belly richer rufous but not as intense as in praepectoralis (Uganda 
birds) or birds from North Nandi. Outer web of primaries Rood's Brown. 

Weight and measurements: Wing 103.0 mm, tail 88.0 mm, bill 13.0 mm. 
Paratypes: $. Reg. No. 12322/802, collected Kakamega Forest Station on 
9.^.1966 by A. D. Forbes-Watson, wing 107.0 mm. White tail spot 3 1.0 mm, 
weight 48.5 g. ? Reg. No. 12323/802, collected by A. D. Forbes-Watson at 
Kakamega Forest Station on 11.xii.1966, wing 113.0 mm, white tail spot 
34.0 mm, weight 57.5 g. $ Reg. No. 12324/802 collected same place as others, 
wing 104.0 mm, white tail spot 32.0 mm, weight 56.0 g. All these specimens 
are recorded as having iris earth brown, bill black, feet pale flesh. In addition 
one topotypical <£ Reg. No. 12320/802 from the same locality was collected 
by A. L. Archer on 20.ii.1973, wing 103.0 mm, white spot 32.0 mm, weight 
56.0 g. 

[Bull.B.O.C. ipSi: 101(4)] 358 

Birds from the North Nandi when placed alongside these Kakamega 
specimens are clearly much darker and we have no hesitation in describing 
them as: — 

Neocossyphus poensis nigridorsalis subsp. nov. 

Holotype: 3 Reg. No. 17592/802 in National Museum, Nairobi, Kenya 
collected on track 7, swamp area, Kamwega-Kipsamoiti track, North 
Nandi Forest, Western Kenya, o° 20'N, 34 58'E at 2133 m on 12.xii.1978 
by Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien and National Museum, Kenya Joint 

Description: Crown (scaly) and back to upper tail coverts Blackish Brown. 
Tail Jet Black, outer rectrix white spot 31.0 mm. Throat slightly paler than 
breast, Tawny Olive, slightly scaly in appearance. Belly Dresden Brown 
with flanks Antique Brown, not as rich rufous as praepectoralis. Outer 
web of primaries Walnut Brown compared with Russet of praepectoralis. 
Undertail coverts each with a dark shaft and narrow dark fringe of Antique 
Brown. Iris recorded as brown-chestnut, bill black. Legs pinkish with grey 

Weight and measurements: Wing 1 12.0 mm, tail 98.0 mm, white spot on tail 
31.0 mm, bill 14.0 mm, weight 48.0 g. Paratypes: All from the same area of 
Kamwega Kipamoiti, North Nandi Forest, collected on dates between 9«xi 
and 20.xii.1978 by the joint expedition. <J Reg. No. 17593/802, wing 
102.0 mm, white spot 34.0 mm, weight 50.0 g. $ Reg. No. 17595/802, non- 
breeding, wing 50.0 mm, white spot 33.0 mm, weight 50.5 g. $ Reg. No. 
17494/802 111.0 mm, white spot 30.0 mm, weight 55.5 g. In addition, one 
topotype $ was collected by V. C. Fayad in the same forest on 5.1.1978, 
Reg. No. 17196/802, wing 105.0 mm, white spot 33.0 mm, weight 55.0 g. 
Another series taken in 1979 in the same forest but further south near 
Chemisia, o° 1 5 'N, 3 5 ° 00 'E, match the type series. 

These new races have been compared directly with specimens from the 
Budongo, Malabigambo, Kayonsa and Bwamba Forests, all low country 
forests between 1000 m and 1370 m. The highland race from the North 
Nandi is by far the darkest. Kakamegoes is the original orthography. 


We have compared our North Nandi birds with specimens from the 
Kakamega Forest and the forests of Uganda. Most recent writers have 
referred birds from Kakamega and Uganda to the race woosnami of Ogilvie- 
Grant (Keith et al. (1969), Friedmann & Williams (1969, '70, '71, '73) for 
Uganda forests, Ripley & Bond (1971) for Kakamega, and Zimmerman 
(1972)). The type locality of woosnami is the Mpanga Forest (=Kibale) of 

When a series is laid out it becomes instantly apparent that the North 
Nandi birds are decidedly greener, darker on the dorsal surface and brighter 
altogether ventrally. We see little difference between birds from Kakamega 
and Uganda, though in series the latter appear more brownish olive on the 

We feel these North Nandi birds deserve sub-specific distinction and 
therefore describe them as : — 

Bleda syndactyla nandensis subsp. nov. 
Holotype: $ Reg. No. 17603/692, Field No. 54, in National Museum, 

359 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

Nairobi, Kenya . Collected on track 3 off the road Kamwega-Kipsamoiti, 
North Nandi Forest, Western Kenya, o° 20'N, 34 58'Eat2i33 mon9.xi.1978 
by Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien and National Museum, Kenya Joint 

Description: Throat distinct Lemon Yellow. Breast to belly Empire 
Yellow. Flanks and sides of upper breast Warbler Green. Back dark 
Greenish Olive. Intense black streak below eye. Head dark, but only just 
darker than back, Olivaceous Black. Inner web of primaries almost black 
with greenish outer web. Tail rich Rufous. Iris red-brown, eye-ring light 
blue. Upper bill dark horn, lower pale bluish. Legs pinkish flesh tinged 
brown. For comparison with Kakamega birds we record colours as follows : — 
Throat Picric Yellow, belly Lemon Yellow, flanks Citrine, back Brownish 
Olive. Head distinctly darker than the back which is Olivaceous Black, 
wings dark greyish-brown with grey outer webs. There is a dark streak below 
the eye. 

Weight and measurements: Wing 109.0 mm, bill 21.0 mm, tail 100.0 mm, 
weight 47.5 g. Paratypes: <§ Reg. No. 17604/692, gonads enlarging, wing 
1 1 2.0 mm, bill 21.0 mm, weight 48.0 g. <$ Reg. No. 17605/692, gonads large, 
wing 105.0 mm, bill 21.5 mm, weight 45.4 g. 9 Reg. No. 17607/692, slight 
ovarian development, wing 101.0 mm, bill 18.0 mm, weight 45.0 g. 9 Reg. 
No. 17608/692, non-breeding, wing 102.0 mm, bill 20.0 mm, weight 40.0 g. 
All collected in the same area as holotype between 9»xi and 20.xii.1978. All 
in NMN. A further series of 5 specimens taken in 1979 in the same forest but 
further south near Chemisia, o° 1 5 'N, 3 5 ° 00 'E, match the type series. 

Measurements are of interest and Bergman's Rule applies in that the high 
altitude North Nandi birds at 2133 m run larger than the Kakamega (300 m 
lower) and Uganda specimens. Mean for North Nandi <?c?, 108.6 (105- 
112.0) mm, 99 101.5 (101.0-102.0) mm while 6 Kakamega $<$ have mean 
103 (99.0-107.0) mm and 99 mean 100.0 (98.5-102.0) mm. Uganda c?c£ have 
mean 103.0 (98.0-1 1 0.0) mm, $9 mean 95.0 (93.0-98.0) mm. The Uganda 
specimens are from the low lying Bwamba Forest (c. 1000 m) and 2 from 
Kibale Forest (c. 1 5 2 5 m). 

phyllastrephus placidus Placid Greenbul 

Dowsett (1972) has clarified the relationships of P. cabanisi, P. placidus and 
P. fischeri. In the past the highland or montane Kenya birds have been as- 
signed to P. fischeri cabanisi (e.g Ripley & Bond 1971) or P. cabanisi sucosus 
(Zimmerman 1972), particularly those birds from the Kakamega Forest, 
which now, following Dowsett, should be P. placidus sucosus. 

It was natural that we should firstly compare our long North Nandi 
series with birds from Mount Elgon, Kakamega and Kapenguria, then 
with examples from elsewhere. It was quickly apparent that the North Nandi 
series differed markedly from birds from all other localities, firstly being 
bright yellow on the belly with a clear pale throat and dark chest, but with 
a striking feature to be seen in the remiges, the outer webs of which were 
Buffy Citrine and the inner virtually black without any trace of the Brussels 
Brown of birds from Kakamega and Kapenguria. A single maie from Mount 
Elgon approaches the North Nandi birds but the coverts are brownish and 
not Olive Green. On the ventral surface the Elgon example is not as bright 
as the Nandi, and the Kakamega specimens also are duller. 

We are unable to match the North Nandi birds with those from Rapogi, 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 360 

Kilgoris, Ngare Ngare to the Nguruman Range, South Western Kenya or 
birds from Equator, Mau Narok or Mau Escarpment, west of the Rift Valley 
and propose to designate the North Nandi birds as a new race, as 
Phyllastrephus placidus nandensis subsp. nov. 
Holotype: c?, Reg. No. 17662/685, Field No 229, in National Museum, 
Nairobi, Kenya, collected on track from Kamwega to Kipsamoiti, North 
Nandi Forest, Western Kenya, o° 20'N, 34 58'E at 2133 m on 16.xi.1978 
by Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien and National Museum, Kenya Joint 

Description: Iris recorded as pale brown, bill dark horn paler at tip and 
tomium, lower mandible with pale base. Legs dark olive-grey. Head, crown 
to nape, dark Greenish Olive with a slightly scaly appearance due to narrow 
pale fringe to each feather. Back to rump, Olive, paler than the head. Rump 
lighter olive. Upper tail coverts Tawny Olive to Yellowish Olive. Tail 
dorsal surface light Brownish Olive to Sepia at shaft, undersurface Medal 
Bronze. Chin and throat Martin's Yellow. Sides of breast, Kronberg Green 
wash. Central belly to vent Picric Yellow with some slightly darker or 
denser streaks at upper breast of yellow. Wings, primaries and secondaries 
Buffy Olive edged to Bufty Citrine, inner webs almost black. Wing coverts 
similar to back. 

Thus the back of the North Nandi bird is green, that of sucosus from 
other localities has a brownish wash. The wings of sucosus are brown and 
the rectrices more chestnut, throat and belly not so yellow, flanks paler. In 
the North Nandi birds the dark colour forms a distinct band across the chest. 
Specimens from the Nguruman Range are not quite so yellow, browner on 
the wings but otherwise similar, though distinct. Kapenguria examples are 
duller on the ventral side and have brownish wings, while birds from 
Equator are nearer placidus. All races are brighter than examples from Ngare 

Weight and measurements: Wing 80.0 mm, tail 77.0 mm, bill 15.0 mm, 
weight 25.5 g. Paratypes: 24 <$$ and 21 $$. Sexes alike. All taken at the same 
site as holotype between 9«xi and 20.xii.1978. Wings c?<?, mean 80.4 mm 
(78.0-85.0) mm; $?, mean 76.2 (70.0-77.0) mm. Tails <JcJ, 77.0-85.0 mm; 
??, 68.0-84.0 mm. Wing/tail ratio, <£<?, 98.2, $$, 103.9. There is no con- 
sistency between wing/tail measurements: in <?6* 16 had tails shorter and 7 
longer than 99, ranging from 4.0 mm longer to 7.5 mm shorter. In 99 the 
tails of 11 were shorter and 9 were longer than c?<?, ranging from 10.0 mm 
longer to 6.0 mm shorter (cf. Dowsett 1972). Another series of 17 specimens 
secured in 1979 from the same forest near Chemisia match the type series. 

The birds from the Nguruman Range, an isolated, well forested range 
rising to c. 2400 m, south of the Mau, west of the Rift Valley, as noted above 
show some similarity to the North Nandi race and we consider them worthy 
of recognition as 

Phyllastrephus placidus ngurumanensis subsp. nov. 

Holotype: £, Reg. No. 16438/685, in National Museum, Nairobi, Kenya, 
from Kipurses, Nguruman Range, Kenya i° 33'S, 3 6° io'E, at 1500 m, col- 
lected 9.XL1976 by V. C. Fayad. 

Description: Data recorded gave iris dark brown, bill brownish yellow and 
feet grey. Head, with faint scaly appearance and back down to rump 
Olive Citrine. Upper tail coverts Sepia. Upper tail surface Sepia. Chin, throat 

361 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

pale, streaked with Barium Yellow. Upper breast Olive streaked with Barium 
Yellow, the olive forming a band across the chest. Lower breast to belly- 
streaked Barium Yellow, more extensive towards the crissum, yellower at 
mid-belly. Flanks dull Citrine. Undertail coverts yellowish. Wings, primaries 
and secondaries edged Dresden Brown, inner web of primaries almost black. 
Coverts Olive Brown. Sexes alike. On the ventral surface not as bright as 
birds from North Nandi and the breast band not so pronounced. 

Weight and Measurements: Wing 83.5 mm, tail 78.0 mm, bill 15.0 mm, 
weight 23.0 g. Paratypes: $, Reg. No. 16440/685 from Kipurses, 12.xi.1976, 
wing 79.0 mm, tail 88.0 mm, weight 20.5 g. i, Reg. No. 16439/685 from 
Kipurses, 13.xi.1976, wing 88.0 mm, tail 87.0 mm. Both collected by V. C. 
Fayad. Additional examples: Q Reg. No. 12960/685 from Olengakuala 
Stream, Nguruman Range collected 1976, wing 76.0 mm, tail 73.0 mm. 
6% Reg. No. 12959/685 from Olengakuala Stream, 14.iv.1976, wing 84.0 mm, 
tail 82.0 mm, weight 26.0 g. 3, Reg. No. 12961/685, 18.iv.1976, wing 83.0 
mm, tail 80.0 mm, weight 28.0 g. All collected by T. O. Osborne and in 

spermophaga ruficapilla Red-headed Bluebill 

We carefully compared our North Nandi series with material from else- 
where in Kenya and find little difference. However, we did find in the NMN 
a small series of birds collected at Kilgoris, near Kisii, Western Kenya with 
a distinctly different plumage particularly with respect to the sub-adults. 
Kilgoris is an interesting locality, for to-day most of the forested areas have 
been cleared and only riverine gallery forest remains in a few scattered 
locations. In a direct comparison with S.r. ruficapilla we find the following 
differences : — 

Kilgoris Kakamega & Nandi 

<J Back, Dull Slate Black Plumbeous Black with a sheen 

$ Back, Dark Mouse Grey, dull Deep Neutral Grey 

<J Head, Nopal Red Nopal Red 

$ Head, Nopal Red Scarlet Red 

9 Belly, White spots on grey white spots on black 

In addition, the bills of the Kilgoris birds are fractionally (1-2 mm) shorter and stubbier. 

However, it is in the sub-adult that the differences are more striking. The 
Kilgoris male has the chest Prout's Brown above intermingled greyish- 
brown on the lower belly, whereas ruficapilla of the same age (from Nandi and 
Kakamega) is Mummy Brown (darker) over Chaetura Black. Both sub- 
adults compared had the first red crown feathers just appearing. 

We therefor propose to designate a new sub-species : — 

Spermophaga ruficapilla kilgoris subsp. nov. 

Holotype: Sub-adult c?, Reg. No. 1 4049/1 106, in National Museum, 
Nairobi, Kenya, collected at Kilgoris, South West Kenya, on 8.11.1963. 
Collector unknown. 

Description: Wing 69.0 mm. Crown to nape Chaetura Drab tinged brownish. 
Back Fuscous Black. Tail black. Throat to upper breast Prout's Brown. 
Lower breast and belly, mixed, almost speckled, Prout's Brown and Fuscous 
Black. Bill stubby, blue-black with tomium pinkish. Paratypes: Adult 6\ 
Reg. No. 14037/1106. Back and belly Slate Black. Head to nape, breast 
Nopal Red. Bill iridescent bluish, tomium and base of upper bill pinkish, 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 362 

tip pink. Collected at Kilgoris, 15.ii.1963. Collector unknown. Weight 26.0 g. 
Wing 68.0 mm. ?, Reg. No. 14043/1106. Head, nape, breast and flanks 
Nopal Red. Belly with rounded white spots on light grey background. 
Back, dark Mouse Grey, very dull. Collected at Kilgoris, 24.1.1963, collector 
unknown. Wing 67.5 mm. $, Reg. No. 14048/1106, as above, collected 
3.11.1963. Wing 65.0 mm. Weight 24.0 g. $, Reg. No. 14048/1106, as above, 
collected Kilgoris on 20.1.1963. Wing 65.0 mm. All specimens in National 
Museum, Nairobi. 

Mackworth-Praed & Grant (1957) state "juvenile is sooty black above 
and rather browner below, bill as in adult". This is erroneous as all juveniles 
have black bills and the blue iridescent bill is not assumed until the bird is 
an advanced sub-adult and the first red feathering of the head has appeared. 
This is very clear from our long series taken at North Nandi of juveniles and 
sub-adults. The gape in the juveniles is yellow, the palate has 3 blackish 
spots in triangle formation and there are 2 upper and 2 lower gape papillae, 
yellow in colour. 

Acknowledgements: We would like to thank V. C. Fayad and T. O. Osborne for donating 
their specimens to the National Museum on completion of their research projects. We also 
gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of overseas museums in providing comparative 
material. We acknowledge the help given by C. W. Benson who read and commented 
on the original typescript and particularly we wish to thank J. F. Monk for his patience and 
for much editing. 

References : 

Benson, C. W. 1 946. Notes on the birds of Southern Abyssinia. Ibis 8 8 (4) : 1 80-2 5 o. 
Cave, F. O. & MacDonald, J. D. 1955. Birds of the Sudan. Oliver & Boyd: London. 
Chapin, J. P. 1953. The birds of the Belgian Congo. Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. Vol 75 A: 

Dowsett, R. J. 1972. Is the bulbul Phyllastrephus placidus a good species? Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 

92(5): 132-138. 
Friedmann, H. 1966. A contribution to the ornithology of Uganda. Bull. Los Angeles County 

Mus. Nat. Hist., Science 3:1-55. 

— 1967. Results of the 1966 Cheney expedition to Samburu district, Kenya. Ornithol- 
ogy. Los Angeles County Museum Contrib. Sci. 174: 1-34. 

Friedmann, H. & Stager, K. E. 1969. Results of the A vil expedition to Mt. Nyiru, Samburu 
District, Kenya. Ornithology. Los Angeles County Museum. Contrib. Sci. 174: 1-30. 

Friedmann, H. & Williams, J. G. 1970 a. Birds of the Kalinzu Forest, South West Ankole, 
Uganda, Los Angeles County Museum. Contrib. Sci. 195 : 1-27. 

— 1970 b. Additions to the known avifauna of the Bungoma Kibale and Impenetrable 
Forests, West Uganda. Los Angeles County Museum. Contrib. Sci. 198: 1-20. 

— 1 97 1. The birds of the Lowlands of Bwamba, Toro Province, Uganda. Los Angeles 
County Museum. Contrib. Sci. 211: 1-70. 

— 1973. The birds of the Budongo Forest, Bunyoro Province, Uganda. /. East. Afr. 
Nat. Hist. Soc. 141. 

Hall, B. P. & Moreau, R. E. 1970. An Atlas of Speciation in African Passerine Birds. London: 
British Museum (Nat. Hist.). 

Jackson, F. J. 1938. Birds of Kenya Colony and the Uganda Protectorate. London: Gurney and 

Keith, S., Twomey, A., Friedmann, H. & Williams, J. G. 1969. The Avifauna of the Im- 
penetrable Forest, Uganda. Amer. Mus. Novit. 2389 : 1-41. 

Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 1957. African Handbook of Birds. Eastern and 
North Eastern Africa. Vol. 2 (2nd ed). London : Longmans, Green. 

Moreau, R. E. 1951a. Relationships in Pseudoalcippe. Ibis 93(1): 138-139. 

— 1951b. Geographical variation and plumage sequence in Pogonocichla. Ibis 93(3): 

Prigogine, A. 1971. Les oiseaux de LTtombwe et de son hinterland. Ann. Sci. Zool. Tervuren 
8(185): 1-298. 

363 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

Ripley, S. D. & Bond, G. M. 1971. Systematic notes on a collection of birds from Kenya. 
Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology. No 1 1 1 . 

Sclater, W. L. 1930. Systema Avium Aethiopicarum. Pt II: 305-922. 

van Someren, V. G. L. 1932. Novitates Zoologicae. 37: 380. 

— 1939. Birds of the Chyulu Hills./. E. Afr. & Uganda Nat. Hist. Soc. 14: 75-77. 

White, C. M. N. 1962. A revised check list of African shrikes &c. Lusaka: Dept. of Game 
& Fisheries. 

Zimmerman, D. A. 1972. The Avifauna of the Kakamega Forest, Western Kenya, in- 
cluding a bird population study. Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. Vol 149 : 25 7-3 39. 

Zimmerman, D. A. & Mumford, R. E. 1965. First specimens of three species of birds from 
Kenya. Auk 82(3): 282-283. 

Postscript: In the first part of this paper (101(3): 3 84) we described a new race 
of the Olive Thrush from North Nandi Forest, Western Kenya as Turdus 
ahyssinicus fuscatus, type locality Kipsamoiti-Kamwega, o°2o'N, 34°58'E. Dr. 
Wolters of Museum Alexander Koenig in Bonn, Germany has kindly pointed 
out that this name is pre-occupied by Turdus fuscatus Vieillot, Hist. Nat. 
OiseauxAmer. Sept. 2, t. 57, 1808, (=Margarops fuscatus (Vieillot), Mimidae) 
and by Turdus fuscatus Pallas, Zoogr. Rosso-Asiat., i,Taf. 12, 181 \ i { = Turdus 
naumanni eunomus Temm.). We therefore piopose 

Turdus abyssinicus porini nomen novem 
for T. a fuscatus C-van Someren & Schifter. Etymology from Kiswahili, 
port— a forest thus porini =o£ the forest. 

Address: G. R. Cunningham-van Someren, National Museums of Kenya, Section of 

Ornithology, P.O. Box 40658, Nairobi, Kenya. 

H. Schifter, Naturhistorisches Museum, Postfach 417, 1014 Wien, Austria. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Notes on some Surinam birds 
tyj- Inge Is 

Received 22 January 1981 

Since publication of Birds of Surinam (Haverschmidt 1968), additions to the 
Surinam avifauna have been reported by Mees (1968, 1973, 1974, 1976, 
1977), Renssen (1974a), de Jong and Holthuijzen (1977), Trail (1978) and 
Davis (1979). Lists with additional information on Surinam birds have also 
been published since by Haverschmidt (1972, 1975), Renssen (1974b) and 
Spaans(i978 a & b). 

These notes present observations on occurrence, habitat preference, 
nesting behaviour, breeding seasons or feeding behaviour of 17 species of 
Surinam birds. They extend Haverschmidt (1968) and are given his number- 
ing, and were obtained during 2 visits of 4 weeks to Surinam in April 1979 
and April 1980. A group of Dutch ornithologists including Dr. A. L. Spaans 
were involved in observations of 1979 indicated with an *. Most data were 
collected in the Brownsberg and Raleighfalls-Voltzberg nature reserves 
managed by Stinasu (Foundation for Nature Preservation in Surinam). 


3. Crypturellus soui Little Tinamou. On 25 April 1979, I was shown a nest 
of this tinamou by a member of the Stinasu start on Brownsberg. Two glossy 
reddish violet eggs lay in a scrape in dead leaves on the ground among very 
dense vegetation covering a bank, approximately o. 5 m away from the higher 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 364 

edge of a trail in sloping forest (see Plate). The incubating tinamou sat very- 
tight, only leaving the eggs when a hand was stretched out in its direction. 
The eggs measured 43.2 x 32.8 and 43.8 x 33.0 mm, which is wider than 
reported by Haverschmidt (1968). 

20. Ardeola (=Bubulcus — Hancock & Elliott 1978) ibis* Cattle Egret. A 
recent, well-known nesting colony, protected by Stinasu, is situated in bushes 
on the left bank of the Suriname river in Paramaribo, where the Sommeld- 
ijksche creek discharges into that river (beside the Hotel Torarica). On 8 
April 1979, breeding activity consisted mainly of nest building; egrets with 
nesting material (twigs, sticks) were arriving continually at the colony. Only 
some nests were occupied by incubating egrets and probably a very few nests 
contained newly hatched young. On 1 May, nesting activity had greatly 
increased; building by now was restricted to a few nests on the fringe of the 
colony, and most nests were occupied by incubating egrets ; feeding of small 
nestlings was witnessed and a few immature egrets with typical greyish bills 
pottered about in the colony. Around that date, the nesting colony was 
obviously at its maximum activity, i.e. nearly all nests contained eggs or 
young. On the other hand, during April 1980, no nesting activity was 
observed in the colony and few egrets were present in and around the bushes. 
Haverschmidt (1968) mentions that the main rainy season (mid April-mid 
August) is the nesting period of this egret in Surinam. 

171. ~Leptotila ruf axilla* Grey-fronted Dove. On 14 April 1979, I found a 
nest of this dove with 2 white, slightly incubated eggs. The flimsy platform 
of sticks was placed approximately 2.5 m high in dense shrubbery interlaced 
with spiny vines, 2 m away from the so-called plateau road on Brownsberg. 
The eggs could be seen through the nest platform. They measured 29.3 x 21.1 
and 29.5 x 21.6 mm, agreeing well with measurements reported by Haversch- 
midt (1968, 1972). This dove had only been found breeding in January by 
Haverschmidt, although nesting throughout the year as in the White-tipped 
or White-fronted Dove Leptotila verreauxi is plausible. 

The Grey-fronted Dove is more of a forest bird than the White-fronted, 
but there is some overlap. They are fairly readily separated in the field by the 
colour of the naked loral and orbital skin: reddish in ruf axilla, bluish in 
verreauxi (Ingels 1981a). Near Voltzberg, I found White-fronted Doves to be 
rather common on a large, flat granite outcrop with scattered vegetation 
which was entirely surrounded by lowland rainforest and where Grey- 
fronted Doves were absent. 

172. Geotrjgon montana* Ruddy Quail-Dove. On 15 April 1979, I found a 
nest with 2 cream-coloured eggs next to a forest trail on Brownsberg. The 
nest was situated on top of a mass of entangled tree roots and vines, at the 
base of a large tree, approximately 0.3 m above the forest floor. It was merely 
a scrape lined with some fresh leaves, in a mat of dead leaves. The eggs 
measured 26.4 x 19.2 and 26.5 x 19.5 mm, well within the limits given by 
Haverschmidt (1968). 

On 16 April (9 a.m.), I found one half of an eggshell and 2 newly hatched, 
still wet squabs in the nest. They had a pinkish skin, rather long yellowish 
down and a greyish bill. On 24 April, all pterylae were covered with sprouting 
pin feathers, with down restricted to coronal and spinal tracts. Remiges and 
rectrices were almost fully grown and their bills had turned blackish. On 26 
April both were already well feathered, with pin feathers tipped with down 

36 5 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 


1-1 2 

a b 


[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 


Fig. 2. "Nest" with egg (arrow) of a Blackish Nightjar Caprimulgus nigrescens on the 2nd 
granite plateau near Voltzberg, Surinam. (Photo J. Ingels) 

I Ig. }. Slits (arrows) in the calyx of a \ 
hexagonus, pierced by a Black-eared 
(Photo J. Ingels) 

ithered flower of a Queen-of-the-Night cactus Cereus 
Fairy Heliothryx aurita, near Voltzberg, Surinam. 

367 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

fluffs on the head only. Both were ?$ as the dull brown juvenal body feathers 
and wing coverts were edged rufous (Goodwin 1970). On 27 April (11.30 
a.m.) both had left the nest, giving a nestling period of 11 days, in close 
agreement with observations by Skutch (1949). 

1 84. Forpus passerinus Green-rumped Parakeet. On 4 April 1980, 1 observed 
a pair of these parakeets alighting in the crown of a kankantri tree Ceiba 
pentandra in the new grounds of the University of Surinam. The $ entered a 
hori2ontal hollow dead stump, and after a while the <J flew off. After half an 
hour, the $ was still in the nest hole, probably incubating or brooding small 
nestlings. This behaviour confirms similar observations by Haverschmidt 

190. Pionus menstruus Blue-headed Parrot. On 24 April 1979, the manager 
of Brownsberg (where this parrot is common), showed me a juvenile. It had 
fallen to the forest floor upon leaving the nest hole. Differences in com- 
parison with the adult colour pattern (Forshaw 1973) were: general plumage 
pale green, head and neck greenish, narrowly edged with blue, forehead 
reddish blue, breast feathers rosy, edged with bluish green, ear-coverts dull 
bluish grey, under tail-coverts yellowish green marked with rose, wing- 
coverts yellowish green, bill dark horn colour with a soft, thickened yellowish 
red base to the upper mandible, iris black, legs, feet and cere slate coloured. 

223. Caprimulgus nigrescens* Blackish Nightjar. This widespread nightjar 
breeds during both dry seasons (mid February-mid April, mid August-mid 
November) in Surinam (pers. obs.). The pronounced preference of this 
nightjar for rocky areas, especially granite outcrops in rainforest is a unique 
feature among neotropical caprimulgids. Large numbers live and breed on 2 
flat granite outcrops with scattered vegetation near Voltzberg (Ingels 1981b). 

On 19 April 1979 and 8 April 1980, 1 found 3 and 1 "nests" respectively, 
with one egg in each, on the second granite plateau near Voltzberg; 2 lay in 
slight depressions on bare rock, 2 lay amidst debris of dead branches of 
Clusia bushes, one of these latter on bare rock, the other on a thin layer of 
humus (see Plate). On 26 April 1979, I found a "nest" with one egg on the 
reddish gravel of an open site on Brownsberg. All nest sites were exposed to 
full sun. The eggs were remarkably conspicuous on the dark granite or 
reddish gravel when the incubating nightjar was off the nest. 

The eggs measured: 24.3 x 17.3, 25.6 x 18.6, 25.9 x 18.7, 25.1 x 18.3 and 
25.2 x 18.5 mm. They are slightly glossy and have a creamish to pinkish buff 
ground colour with brown spots and underlying brownish grey spots and 
blotches. Markings are irregularly formed, with different shades and uneven 
colour intensity and are fairly uniformly distributed over the entire egg. The 
ends of an egg differ little, both being almost equally blunt. 

255. Topa^a pef/a* Crimson Topaz. This marvellous hummingbird is 
more common in Surinam than is generally accepted (Akrum pers. comm.). 

On the same granite outcrop near Voltzberg mentioned under Caprimulgus 
nigrescens^ I observed on 19 April 1979, two #<? occupying feeding territories, 
consisting of clumps of flowering Vitcairnia nuda, a common bromeliad on 
these granite outcrops. Territories were defended against the common 
Grey-breasted Sabrewings Campylopterus largipennis. The smaller Fork-tailed 
Woodnymphs Thalurania furcata were normally allowed to feed from flowers 
at the edge of the territory, but not in the centre. On 3 successive days, one $ 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 3 68 

was observed in its feeding territory between 7 a.m. and approximately 1 
p.m., after which it disappeared into the surrounding rainforest. 

256. Heliothryx aurita Black-eared Fairy. In April 1980, flowers were 
scarce on and around the granite outcrops near Voltzberg. Few humming- 
birds were present. 

This hummingbird was first seen on 14 April 1980, when a <? came to feed 
at the umbels of small flowers of an understory shrub growing around the 
Stinasu camp. On 1 5 April, I observed a $ piercing the calyx bases of withered 
flowers of the Queen-of-the-Night Cereus bexagonus, a common cactus on the 
granite outcrops. These flowers last only one night, and at dawn most have 
already withered. On examination, I found that some flowers had up to 8 
slits (see Plat$). At its base, the fleshy calyx wall is between 2 and 3 mm thick 
and the hummingbird was observed to really "force" its bill into the flower 
base. This hummingbird may have tried to exploit this possible nectar source 
because other flowers were scarce. 

374. Pithy s a/bifrons* White-plumed Antbird. On 19 April 1979, 1 found the 
first recorded nest for Surinam of this antbird and only the second for the 
species (Willis 1972). It was situated in the low crown of a prickly palm 
Bactris sp. next to a forest trail in the Raleighfalls- Voltzberg nature reserve. 
A detailed description of the nest and eggs of this antbird has been published 
(Ingels 1980). 

420. Fluvicolapica Pied Water-Tyrant. On 21 April 1979, 1 saw this water- 
tyrant collecting billfuls of "seed cotton" from an ornamental shrub in a 
garden in Paramaribo. Apparently, it lines its nest not only with feathers 
(Haverschmidt 1968), but also with seed fluff. 

506. T urdus albicollis White-necked Thrush. On 22 April 1980, I found a 
nest of this thrush with 2 young between 2 and 4 days old, on Brownsberg. 
The nest was built at a height of 1. 10 m in an oblong niche-like hole in a 
large, moss-covered forest tree next to a forest trail. The cup-shaped nest 
was situated on top of a pile of green living moss (see Plate) of which the 
outer wall was composed. The cup, with a diameter of 9 cm and 5.5 cm deep, 
was lined with dark plant fibres and rootlets. On approaching the nest, the 
adults, which were hidden in the undergrowth, uttered the typical alarm call 
of Turdidae, a prolonged "tseeeet", described by Skutch (i960) as "a full, 
mellow, mournful whistle". 

Both young had orange flesh-coloured skin, and intense orange-red gapes. 
On 22 April, the nestlings weighed 20.5 and 10.0 g and on 24 April, 31.5 
and 19.5 g respectively. The adults weighed 54.0 and 58.5 g, both weights 
easily exceeding the maximum of 47 g given for this thrush by Haverschmidt 
(1968), but in complete agreement with data presented by ffrench (1973). 

Deep body temperatures (for the method used in measuring DBTs see 
Ingels 1981b) of both adults were 42-6° and 43*4°C, corresponding with the 
high body temperatures found in other neotropical thrushes by Oniki (1972). 
On 23 and 24 April, DBT of both young measured at noon, after a period of 
half an hour of lying exposed in the nest to an air temperature of 24°-2 5°C, 
were: older one, 36-8° and 39*2°C; younger one, 35-5° and 37*9°C respectively. 
With a probable nestling period of 1 5-17 days as in other neotropical Turdus 
species, nestlings of this thrush should be able to regulate their body tempera- 
ture to that of an adult only by the age of 8-1 1 days (Ricklefs & Hainsworth 

369 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

On several occasions, I saw the adults feeding insects, worms and red 
berries (c. 13 x 10 mm) to the young. The (regurgitated?) single brownish 
black seeds (approximately 9x6 mm) were afterwards found in the nest. 

524. Dacnis cayana* Blue Dacnis. On 12 April 1979 I observed a pair of 
this dacnis with 2 juveniles in the savanna around the Jan Starke camp of the 
Surinam Forest Service near Zanderij. They were among a mixed flock of 
Red-legged Honeycreepers Cyanerpes cyaneus, Rufous-crowned Tanagers 
Tangara cayana, Blue-grey Tanagers Thraupis episcopus and Palm Tanagers 
Thraupis palmarum, all hawking winged ants leaving their arboreal nest after 
a rain shower. The insects were also fed to the juveniles. Observation of a 
family party of this dacnis in this period of the year is not surprising, as the 
November to April period is the main reproductive season of Thraupinae in 
Surinam (Haverschmidt 1968). 

I was also able to confirm with sight records 4 species not mentioned in 
Haverschmidt (1968), but already added to the birdlist of Surinam by sub- 
sequent publications. 

Avocettula recurvirostris Fiery-tailed Awlbill. The presence of this humming- 
bird has been recorded by Trail (1978). On 19 April 1979, 1 observed a 6* for 
about 5 min, foraging among purple leguminaceous flowers on a granite 
outcrop near Voltzberg. Its feeding behaviour, food flowers and colour 
pattern correspond with the detailed description by Trail. 

Corapipo gutturalis* White-throated Manakin. The presence of this manakin 
has been recorded for Brownsberg and Nassau mountains (Mees 1974, 
Kluyver 1975). On 16 April 1979, a flock of c. 10 manakins, mostly 6*6* with 
only a few juveniles or $$, was observed displaying in a low tree about 5 m 
high, half-way along the road to the Brownsberg plateau. 

Piranga flava* Hepatic Tanager. Mees (1974) reported and discussed the 
presence of this tanager in Surinam. On 16 April 1979, a pair was seen on 
Brownsberg, high up in a dead tree on the forested slope towards the weir 
near Afobaka. 

Cissopis lever iana Magpie Tanager. Penard & Penard (19 10) include "the 
Guyanas" in the distribution range of this tanager. It has been observed 
regularly on Foengoe island by independent observers (Davis 1979, Spaans 
pers. comm.). On 7 April 1980, 1 observed for over 15 min 2 tanagers forag- 
ing in low vegetation at the inland end of the airstrip on that island. These 
magpie-like tanagers are unmistakable in the field. 

Acknowledgements: I am greatly indebted to Dr. A. L. Spaans (Research Institute for Nature 
Management, Holland) and Dr. J. H. Ribot (University of Surinam) for their personal 
communications, critical reading of these notes and companionship in the field in 1979 and 
1980 respectively. I am grateful to Dr. I. A. Akrum and R. O. Determann for sharing their 
general knowledge of Surinam birds and plants with me, and to A. J. Mobbs for his help 
in various ways. I much appreciated the cooperation of the staff of STINASU during my 
field work. 

References : 

Davis, T. H. 1979. Additions to the Birds of Suriname. Continental Birdlife 1 : 1 36-146. 

de Jong, B. H. J. & Holthuijzen, A. M. A. 1977. Cliff Flycatcher Hirundinea ferruginea, a new 

species for the Surinam list. Ardea 65 : 203. 
ffrench, R. 1973. A Guide to the Birds of Trinidad and Tobago. Livingston Publishing Cy.: 

Wynnewood (Pa.). 
Forshaw, J. M. 1973. Parrots of the World. Lansdowne Press : Melbourne. 
Goodwin, D. 1970. Pigeons and Doves of the World. British Museum (Natural History) & 

Cornell University Press : London & Ithaca. 
Hancock, J. & Elliott, H. F.I. 1978. The Herons of the World. London Editions Ltd. : London. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 370 

Haverschmidt, F. 1968. Birds of 'Surinam. Oliver & Boyd: Edinburgh. 

— 1972- Bird records from Surinam. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 92 : 49-5 3. 

— 1975 . More bird records from Surinam. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 95 : 74-77. 

Ingels, J. 1980. A nest of the White-plumed Antbird (Pithys albifrons) in Surinam. Auk 97: 

— 1981a. Separation in the field of White-fronted and Grey-fronted Doves (Leptotila 
verreauxi and Leptotila ruf axilla). Bonn. Zool. Beitr. 3 2 : in press. 

— 1981b. Aspects of the nonbreeding biology of the Blackish Nightjar Caprimulgus 
nigrescens in Surinam. (To be published.) 

Kluyver, H. N. (ed.). 1975. De vogels van de Brownsberg. Natuurgids serie B, No. 3. STINASU: 

Mees, G. F. 1968. Enige voor de avifauna van Surinamenieuwe vogelsoorten. Gerfaut 58: 


— 1973. Contopus albogularis (Berlioz) (Aves, Tyrannidae). Proc. Kon. Ned. Akad. Wet. 
series C, 76: 465-475. 

— 1 974- Additions to the avifauna of Suriname. Zool. Med. 48 : 5 5-67. 

— 1976. Mass mortality of Puffinus gravis (O'Reilly) on the coast of Suriname (Aves, 
Procellariidae). Zool. Med. 49 : 269-271. 

— 1977- Zur Verbreitung von Phaethornis malaris (Nordmann) (Aves, Trochilidae). 
Zool. Med. 5 2 : 209-2 1 1 . 

Oniki, Y. 1 972. Some temperatures of Panamanian birds. Condor 74 : 209-2 1 5 . 
Penard, F. P. & Penard, A. P. 1910. De vogels van Guyana II. Nijhoff: 's-Gravenhage. 
Renssen, T. A. 1974a. Twelve bird species new for Surinam. Ardea 62 : 1 18-122. 

— 1 974b. New breeding records from Surinam. Ardea 62 : 1 23-1 27. 

Ricklefs, R. E. & Hainsworth, F. R. 1968. Temperature regulation in nestling Cactus Wrens : 

the development of homeothermy . Condor 70 : 1 2 1-1 27. 
Skutch, A. F. 1949. Life history of the Ruddy Quail-Dove. Condor 5 1 : 3-19. 

— 1 960. Life Histories of Central American Birds II. Pacific Coast Avifauna No. 34. 
Spaans, A. L. 1978a. Status and numerical fluctuations of some North American waders 

along the Surinam coast. Wils.Bull. 90: 60-83. 

— 1978b. Status of terns along the Surinam coast. Bird-Banding 49 : 66-76. 
Trail, P. W. 1978. Sight records of two species new for Surinam. Ardea 66: 184-185. 
Willis, E. O. 1972. Breeding of the White-plumed Antbird {Pithys albifrons). Auk 89: 

Address: Dr. Johan Ingels, Galgenberglaan 9, B-91 20 Destelbergen, Belgium. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

A substitute name for a Philippine minivet (Pericrocotus) 
by Kenneth C. Parkes 

Received 14 February 1981 
In a recent revision of the subspecies of the Flame Minivet Pericrocotus 
fiammeus of the island of Mindanao, Philippines, I described a highly distinc- 
tive but long overlooked population as P. /. neglectus, new subspecies. The 
name I selected was unfortunately more appropriate than I realized at the 
time. I am indebted to Dr. Carlo Violani of the Instituto di Ecologia Animale 
ed Etologia, Pavia, Italy (temporarily at Rutgers University, U.S.A.) for 
calling my attention to the fact that the name neglectus is preoccupied in 
Pericrocotus. I therefore propose Pericrocotus fiammeus nigroluteus, new name, 
for Pericrocotus fiammeus neglectus Parkes, 1974, Ann. Carnegie Mus. 45: 38, 
not Pericrocotus neglectus Hume, 1877, Stray Feathers 5: 171, 189 (now con- 
sidered a subspecies of P. brevirostris). 

The name chosen alludes to the black and yellow rather than black and 
orange colour of adult males, unique among the Mindanao populations of 
this species. 
Address: Dr. Kenneth C. Parkes, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Pittsburgh, Pa. 

15213, U.S.A. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

371 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

The Authorship of the 
Generic and Specific Names of the Bat Hawk 

by R. K. Brooke and P. A. Clancey* 

Received 2 February 19 81 
There are two generic names available for the Bat Hawk: — Macheiramphus 
Bonaparte, 1850, Rev. Mag. Zool. ser. 2, vol. 2: 482; and Machaerhamphus 
Westerman, 185 1, Bijdr. Dierk. 1 : 29. For about a century Westerman's name 
was used, not least because it was believed, erroneously, to have been 
published in 1848. In i960 Deignan, Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 80: 121, pointed out 
that Bonaparte's name had priority and should be brought into use. Both 
authors recognized only one species in their genus, a species which they both 
named alcinus when proposing the genera. As may be seen from the Appendix 
(below), the great majority of workers on African birds have followed the 
Law of Priority and used Bonaparte's name once they had become aware of 
Deignan's remarks. 

Amadon (1979) in Peters' Check-list of Birds of the World (I: 298) restored 
Westerman's name, arguing that Bonaparte's name is a nomen oblitum and 
should not have been resurrected. This is surely unwarranted. In the first 
place, the present Code of Zoological Nomenclature does not recognize the 
term nomen oblitum, but in Art. 79, as amended, lays down the procedure to be 
followed if a previously overlooked senior synonym poses a threat to the 
stable nomenclature of an animal of major interest to the scientific com- 
munity. We are not aware that Dr Amadon has taken the prescribed measures, 
basically an application to the International Commission, for the conservation 
of Westerman's generic and specific names. 

If an application for the conservation of Westerman's names were made 
now instead of in 1961 or 1962 we would oppose it on the grounds that most 
workers on African birds who have published books or check-lists in the 
last 20 years have used Bonaparte's names. It would be a lengthy and not very 
rewarding exercise to comb the extensive periodical literature to see what the 
weight of usage has been, but we are confident that it would support the 
conclusion derived from the survey of books and check-lists enumerated in 
the Appendix below. As far as we are concerned, stability and priority 
combine to continue to follow Deignan in adopting Bonaparte's names 
Macheiramphus alcinus for the Bat Hawk. 


Use of Machaerhamphus Westerman and Macheiramphus Bonaparte in major works on African 
birds since i960. 

Use of Machaerhamphus Westerman 
Amadon, D. 1979. in Amadon, D. & Stresemann, E. Falconiformes in Mayr, E. & Cottrell, 

G. W. (edd.) Check-list of Birds of the World, 2nd ed. Vol. 1: 289. Harvard, Mass.: 

Museum Comparative Zoology. 
Brown, L. 1970. African Birds of Prey (p. 304). London: Collins. 
Brown, L. & Amadon, D. 1968. Eagles, Hawks and Falcons of the World, Vol. 1 : 230. Feltham: 

Country Life Books. 
Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 1962. Birds of the Southern Third of Africa, Vol. 

1 : 150. London : Longmans, Green. 
— — 1 970. Birds of West Central and Western Africa, Vol. 1:125 (where it is attributed 

to Bonaparte). London : Longman Group. 

"This paper constitutes part of the commemoration of the 21st anniversary of the establish- 
ment of the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 372 

Schouteden, H. 1965. La faune omithologique des territoires de Dilolo et Kolwezi de la 
Province du Katanga (p. 16). Zool. Docum. 9: 1-96; and where necessary in earlier 

Use of Macheiramphus Bonaparte (sometimes misspelt "rb" instead of * V") 
Benson, C. W. & Benson, F. M. 1977. The Birds of Malawi (p. 57). Limbe: D. W. K. Mac- 

pherson (sponsor). 
Benson, C. W., Brooke, R. K., Dowsett, R. J. & Irwin, M. P. S. 1971. The Birds of Zambia 

(p. 72). London: Collins. 
Britton, P. L. (ed.). 1980. Birds of East Africa. Nairobi: East Africa Natural History Society. 
Brown, L. H. & Britton, P. L. 1980. The Breeding Seasons of East African Birds (p. 42). 

Nairobi : East Africa Natural History Society. 
Clancey, P. A. 1964. TheBirds of Natal and Zululand(p. 75). Edinburgh: Oliver & Boyd. 

— 1965. A catalogue of birds of the South African sub-region (p. 243). Durban Mus. 
Novit. 7: 201-633. 

— 1971- A handlist of the birds of southern Mozambique (p. 194). Mem. Inst. Invest. 
Cient. Mozambique. Vol. 10, ser. A: 145-303. 

— (ed.) 1980. S.A.O.S. Checklist of Southern African Birds (p. 3 5). Johannesburg : South- 
ern African Ornithological Society. 

Cyrus, D. & Robson, N. 1980. Bird Atlas of Natal (p. 71). Pietermaritzburg : University 

Natal Press. 
Irwin, M. P. S. 1978. A Bibliography of the Birds of Rhodesia 187 3-1 977 (p. 52). Salisbury: 

Rhodesian Ornithological Society. 
McLachlan, G. R. & Liversidge, R. 1970. RobertsBirds of South Africa, 3rd ed. (p. 88). Cape 

Town : Trustees Voelcker Bird Book Fund. 

— — 1978. Roberts Birds of South Africa, 4th ed. (p. 94). Cape Town: Trustees 
Voelcker Bird Book Fund. 

Pakenham, R. H. W. 1979. The Birds of Zanzibar and Pemba (p. 65). London: British Orni- 
thologists' Union. 

Pinto, A. A. da R. 1970. Um catalogo das aves do Distrito da Huila (p. 26). Mem. Trab. 
Inst. Invest. Cient. Angola 6:1-193. 

Serle, W. & Morel, G. J. 1977. A Field Guide to the Birds of West Africa (p. 52). London: 

Snow, D. W. (ed.) 1978. An Atlas of Speciation in African Non-Passerine Birds (p. 105). 
London : Trustees British Museum (Natural History). 

White, C. M. N. 1965. A Revised Check List of African Non-Passerine Birds (p. 59). Lusaka: 
Govt Printer. 

Winterbottom, J. M. 1968. A check list of the land and fresh water birds of the western 
Cape Province (p. 98). Ann. Sth. Afr. Mus. 5 3 : 1-276. 

— (ed.) 1969. Check List of the Birds of South Africa (p. 39). South African Ornithological 

— 1 97 1. A Preliminary Check List of the Birds of South West Africa (p. 58) (where it is 
attributed to Westerman). Windhoek: S.W.A. Scientific Society. 

Address: R. K. Brooke, FitzPatrick Institute, University of Cape Town, Rondebosch 7700, 
South Africa. 
P. A. Clancey, Durban Museum & Art Gallery, Box 4085, Durban 4000, South Africa. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 

Ecological differences between the Grass Owl 

Tyto capensis and the Marsh Owl Asio capensis 

by C. W. Benson 

Received 3 February 1981 

Brooke (1965) reported on a collection made by D. W. K. Macpherson in the 
Furancungo District of northern Mozambique (here interpreted as Mozam- 
bique north of the Zambezi River) in 1928-29. He also used further informa- 
tion in Macpherson's field note-book (now in the FitzPatrick Institute, 

373 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

University of Cape Town, see Ostrich, 1974: 208). Despite further contribu- 
tions by Brooke (1969) and Hanmer (1976), northern Mozambique is still 
relatively little known ornithologically. As indicated by the former, Macpher- 
son had presented a few of his specimens to the British Museum (Natural 
History) (BMNH), and I can confirm their presence in Tring (precise number 
8). Brooke stated that the remainder of the specimens and clutches of eggs 
had been lost. In fact, when my wife and I were the guests of Mr and Mrs 
Macpherson in Malawi in August 1980, he produced a further 50 specimens, 
which he has most kindly presented to the University Museum of Zoology, 

All 50 specimens are correctly identified, dates and localities tallying with 
those given by Brooke (1965). The most interesting is one of the Grass Owl 
Tyto capensis, from the Bandi River, 18 January 1929. There is a specimen of 
this species in the BMNH from Beira, collected by Grant, whereas BMNH 
specimens collected on the Zambezi at Shupanga by Kirk, and at Sena by 
Alexander are of the Marsh Owl Asio capensis. These records have been 
transposed by Vincent (1934), but are correctly shown by Clancey (1971). 
Macpherson' s specimen of T. capensis appears to be the only one from 
northern Mozambique. The only other one of A. capensis from this area may 
be from southwest of Dedza, Malawi (Benson 1952). 

Ecological differences between these 2 species need further investigation. 
Thus Benson & Benson (1977) record both in the same habitat at Dedza. 
Masterson (1973) found that in Mashonaland T. capensis can tolerate longer 
grass and drier situations in which to lie up. It would seem, however, that for 
feeding purposes it is A. capensis which is the less tied to moist ground. Thus 
Irwin (in press) writes of it as "not necessarily on moist ground", whereas 
T. capensis seems less catholic (see also Benson et at. 1971, Benson & Benson 
1977, Britton 1980). Somewhat contrarily to Masterson, too, D. R. Aspinwall 
(pers. comm.) finds that T. capensis can almost invariably be found in plateau 
country in Zambia, where there is "knee-high wiry grass/sedge that grows 
in moist but not inundated places". On the other hand, the habitat of the 
only T. capensis ever observed in Ethiopia (Turner 1974), on 9 May, towards 
the end of the dry season, would seem more typical of that of A. capensis (the. 
record is nevertheless unquestionable). The statement by McLachlan & 
Liversidge (1978) that T. capensis occurs "also in lightly wooded country" is 
surely nowhere applicable, even allowing for the possibility of some geo- 
graphical variation in habitat. 

Data from Zimbabwe suggest that egg-laying by T. capensis may be the 
more strictly associated with the rains. Irwin (in press) gives 23 records, all 
for November-May (peak of 9 in March). Of 79 records of A. capensis, 74 are 
for February-May (peak of 5 9 in March-April), with 2 for June and 1 each 
for July, August and December. McLachlan & Liversidge (1978) give an 
incubation period for T. capensis of c. 42 days, Earle (1978) a fledging period 
of nearly 2 months. From Smith & Killick-Kendrick (1964), it appears that 
a young of A. capensis left the nest after c. 16 days. Data for the Short-eared 
Owl A. flammeus are assumed approximately applicable to its congener. 
Witherby (1938) gives the incubation period as 24-28 days, the young leaving 
the nest at 12-17 days, but unable to fly until 24-27 days. It follows that in 
Zimbabwe young of both species are for the most part being reared at about 
the same time, mainly in May-June, in the early dry season. 

[BuIl.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 374 

The fewer records from Natal and Zululand (Dean 1971) show T. capensis 
as laying in November-May (discounting 1 anomalous record for July), 
A. capensis in February-June. At Barberspan, western Transvaal, Dean (1978) 
gives one record each of T. capensis for February and April, and 13 of A. 
capensis for March-June. Both layings of the former ended in failure, and 
even these attempts were only in years of high rainfall. 

For Zambia and Malawi, 14 records indicate T. capensis as laying iu 
February-June (Benson et al. 1971, Benson & Benson 1977, Colebrook- 
Robjent 1973, Tucker 1980, and Aspinwall, adding unpublished data from 
himself, Colebrook-Robjent, W. F. Bruce-Miller, R. A. Conant and E. H. 
Penry). There are no data for A. capensis from Malawi, but from Zambia, 
from the first and the last 2 of the 5 sources above, there are 1 2 records, for 
March- June (including 7 for April). 

The 2 records of T. capensis quoted by Ruth Chapin (1978), wife of J. P. 
Chapin, for southern Zaire (Shaba) indicate laying in April. Not covered in 
Brown & Britton (1980), there is a female of T. capensis in the BMNH from 
Njombe, southern Tanzania, collected by R. M. Bell, 3 March 1932, and 
marked "two eggs". Yet for further north, 4 records are interpreted by these 
authors as laying in dry months; while 7 of A. capensis, from widespread 
localities, indicate that it "lays at the end of the rains and rears young in the 
subsequent dry season". This latter interpretation agrees rather well with 
that possible from further south, particularly from the numerous Zimbabwe 
data. From the Kivu area, Chapin (1978) records nestlings of T. capensis in 
August, Prigogine (1953) in January, March and August. Probably in this 
area, near the equator, with a wide seasonal distribution of rain (Prigogine 
1953: 92), it can breed with success throughout the year. That laying by 
A. capensis is less strictly associated with the rains derives support from Smith 
& Killick-Kendrick (1964), who record laying in northern Nigeria in the 
last 3 months of the year, the rains having concluded in October. Also, in 
Madagascar, where the incidence of the seasons is similar to that at the same 
latitudes in southern Africa, laying has only been recorded in April, May and 
July (Rand 1936 : 391), in the dry season. 

The possibility of competition between the 2 species is alluded to by 
Brown (1970: 153). In their extensive area of overlap (maps 259, 274 in 
Snow 1978), it could be aggravated by this lack of any clear-cut difference in 
their breeding seasons. Yet there may be differences in their prey. At Barber- 
span, Dean (1978) found that T. capensis (mean weight 450 g) takes heavier 
prey than does A. capensis (325 g). Also, Otomys angoniensis, a major prey of 
T. capensis, is a vlei rodent, inhabiting moister grasslands than do Praomys 
natalensis and Rhabdomys pumilio, major prey of A. capensis. At Vaaldam, south 
central Transvaal, Earle (1978) records rodents (and termites frequently) as 
prey of T. capensis. In fact 5 1 % of the rodent prey was R. pumilio, and 0. 
angoniensis is not listed. Nevertheless, Dean's findings support the indications 
from Zimbabwe and northward that T. capensis is more of a moist grassland 
feeder of the two. At Zimbabwe Ruins, Vernon (1980) found the major prey 
of T. capensis to be rodents, of A. capensis insects, again suggesting that in 
general the former takes larger prey (nevertheless with a wide range, includ- 
ing insects, frogs and a bird as large as the Black Crake Limnocorax flaviro- 
stris). Incidentally, R. A. Conant and P. B. Taylor (in Aspinwall pers. comm.) 
both record A. capensis as preying on termites on the wing in Zambia. 

375 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

It may be that in Madagascar, where T. capensis is unknown, A. capensis has 
a larger size-range of prey than in Africa. Wing-lengths (from Benson et al. 
1976) indicate that A. c. hova is considerably larger than A. c. capensis. Yet in 
Morocco, where T. capensis is also unknown, A. c. tingitanus is little if at all 
larger than A. c. capensis (Mackworth-Praed & Grant 1970), although it may 
be significant that the larger A.flammeus is regular as a winterer. Benson et al. 
bring up to date what little is known about the prey of A. c. hova, which 
includes insects, small mammals and a buttonquail Turnix nigricollis, but 
considerably larger items may also be taken. 

There is some information on the voice of A. capensis, as in Smith & 
Killick-Kendrick (1964) and McLachlan & Liversidge (1978), but until 
recently almost nothing on that of T. capensis (in Africa). McLachlan & 
Liversidge merely state "Hisses loudly". Aspinwall (1979) likens the call to 
that of the Barn Owl T. alba, but a little less strident, "a heavily sibilant high- 
pitched tremolo note lasting one or two seconds". Brooke (1965) quotes no 
information on voice from Macpherson's notes, but the label of the specimen 
shows that Macpherson was attracted by a "loud snoring" while the bird 
was in process of devouring a rat. 

Since the above was submitted, Snow & Louette (1981) have rejected 
sight records of T. capensis from central Namibia as due to probable confusion 
with A. capensis. They originate with Hoesch & Niethammer (1940). It seems 
very unlikely that suitable habitat for T. capensis could exist in so arid an area. 
Although the 2 are very unalike in appearance, sightings only of birds on the 
wing and/or in poor light make confusion possible. This does not invalidate 
the general picture already presented, although it might explain the July egg- 
laying record of T. capensis in Dean (1971). Also, there are records from 
Malawi not covered by Benson & Benson (1977) which are perhaps doubtful. 
Turner & Mill (in Hunter 1976) give "Regular sightings" of A. capensis on 
the Nyika Plateau. Yet R. J. Dowsett (pers. comm., 30 May 1981), who is 
better acquainted with this area than any other ornithologist, past or present, 
writes that he and his wife Dr F. Dowsett-Lemaire have so far only seen 
T. capensis there. Also, Stead & Schulten (1979: 269, 443) believe T. capensis 
to be fairly common, A. capensis only rare, at Lake Chilwa. They refer to 
c. 25 of the former seen from a helicopter — a record questioned by Benson 
& Benson (1977). In contrast to the Nyika, maybe there is more suitable 
habitat for A. capensis than there is for T. capensis around Lake Chilwa. 

Gore (1980) refers to A. capensis as an apparent visitor to The Gambia, 
and Louette (1981) alludes to a possible movement from the Jos Plateau, 
Nigeria to Lake Chad. There could well be movements, due to seasonal 
flooding of grassland. T. capensis, more dependent on permanently moist 
habitat, may be more strictly sedentary. 

Acknowledgements: I am particularly grateful to D. R. Aspinwall and M. P. Stuart Irwin 
for their assistance 

References : 

Aspinwall, D. R. 1979. Bird notes from Zambezi District, North- Western Province. Occ . 

Pap. 2, Zambian Orn. Soc. 
Benson, C. W. 1952. Notes from Nyasaland. Ostrich 23 : 144-1 59. 
Benson, C. W. & Benson, F. M. 1977. The Birds of Malawi. Limbe: D. W. K. Macpherson 

Benson, C.W., Brooke, R. K., Dowsett, R. J. & Irwin, M. P. S. 1971. The Birds of Zambia. 

London : Collins. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 376 

Benson, C. W., Colebrook-Robjent, J. F. R. & Williams, A. 1976. Contribution a l'orni- 
thologie de Madagascar (second part). UOiseau <& R.F.O. 46 : 209-242. 

Britton, P. L. (ed.). 1980. Birds of East Africa. Nairobi : East Africa Natural History Society. 

Brooke, R. K. 1965. Ornithological notes on the Furancungo District of Mozambique. 
Arnoldia (Rhod. ) z( 1 o). 

— 1969. The Miiller collection of birds from northern Portuguese East Africa. Bull. 
Brit. Orn. CI. 89 : 145-1 5 1 . 

Brown, L. 1970. African Birds of Prey. London: Collins. 

Brown, L. H. & Britton, P. L. 1980. The Breeding Seasons of East African Birds. Nairobi: East 

Africa Natural History Society. 
Chapin, R. T. 1978. Brief accounts of some Central African birds, based on the journals of 

James Chapin. Rev. Zool. Afr. 92 : 805-836. 
Clancey, P. A. 1971. A Handlist of the Birds of Southern Mozambique. Lourenco Marques: Inst. 

Invest. Cient. Moc. 
Colebrook-Robjent, J. F. R. 1973. Some breeding records of birds in Zambia. Zambia Mus. 

Dean, W. R. J. 1971. Breeding data for the birds of Natal and Zululand. Durban Mus. Novit. 


— 1978. The ecology of owls at Barberspan, Transvaal. Proc. Symp. Afr. Predatory Birds 
(Pretoria : Northern Transvaal Orn. Soc). 

Earle, R. A. 1978. Observations at a nest of the Grass Owl. Ostrich 49 : 90-91. 

Gore, M. E. J. 1980. Birds oj 'The Gambia. London: B.O.U. Check-list No. 3. 

Hanmer, D. B. 1976. Birds of the Lower Zambezi. Sth. Birds 2: pp. 66. Witwatersrand Bird 

Hoesch, W. & Niethammer, G. 1940. Die Vogelwelt Deutsch-Sudwestafrikas. /. Orn. Lp%. 

88, suppl.: pp. 404. 
Hunter, N. D. (ed.). 1976. Nyala records. Nyala 2(1): 68-69. 
Irwin, M. P. S. In press. The Birds of Zimbabwe. Salisbury : College Press. 
Louette, M. 198 1. The Birds of Cameroon. An annotated check-list. Brussel: Paleis der Acade- 

Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 1970. Birds of West Central and Western Africa. 

Vol. 1. London: Longmans. 
McLachlan, G. R. & Liversidge, R. 1978. Roberts Birds of South Africa. Cape Town: John 

Voelcker Bird Book Fund. 
Masterson, A. 1973. Marsh Owls and Grass Owls. Honeyguide 73 : 17-19. 
Progogine, A. 1953. Contribution a l'etude de la faune ornithologique de la region a l'ouest 

du lac Edouard. Ann. Mus. R. Soc. Congo Beige 8(24) : 1-1 17. 
Rand, A. L. 1936. The distribution and habits of Madagascar birds. Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. 

Hist. 72:143-499. 
Smith, V. W. & Killick-Kendrick, R. 1964. Notes on the breeding of the Marsh Owl Asio 

capensis in northern Nigeria. Ibis 106 : 1 19-123. 
Snow, D. W. (ed.). 1978. An Atlas of Speciation in African Non-passerine Birds. London: 

British Museum (Nat. Hist.). 
Snow, D. W. & Louette, M. 198 1. Atlas of Speciation in African Non-passerine Birds — 

Addenda and Corrigenda 2 . Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 1 o 1 : 336-339. 
Stead, D. E. & Schulten, G. G. M. 1979. The Birds of the Chilwa area. Monogr. Biol. 35: 

264-273, 441-443: 
Tucker, J. J. 1980. Birds at Kabulonga Dam, Lusaka 1970-197 3. Bull. Zambian Orn. Soc. 

12(1): 13-31. 
Turner, D. A. 1974. Cape Grass Owl in Ethiopia. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 94: 38-39. 
Vernon, C. J. 1980. Prey of six species of owl at the Zimbabwe Ruins — 1970 to 1975. 

Honeyguide 101 : 26-27. 
Vincent, J. 1934. The birds of northern Portuguese East Africa (part V). Ibis 13(4): 757—799- 
Witherby, H. F. (ed.). 1938. The Handbook of British Birds. Vol. 2. London: Witherby. 

Address: C. W. Benson, Dept. of Zoology, Downing Street, Cambridge CB2 3EJ, England. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

377 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

On the Type-locality of Pogonocichla interna Sharpe, 1901 

by G. R. Cunningham-van Someren 

Received 1 8 February ip8i 

While working on a collection of Turdinae from Kenya, I was sent, through 
the kindness of I. C. J. Galbraith of the British Museum (Natural History), a 
specimen of Merulajohnstoni (=Turdus abyssinicus) collected by W. G. Doggett, 
and through the additional kindness of C. W. Benson, the holotype of the 
White-starred Forest Robin Pogonocichla intensa. Both specimens were from 
Sir Harry Johnston's collection and carry data written in Doggett's hand, 
both being dated 22 April 1900 and the locality as "Entebbe". The thrush 
has field number 106 and the forest robin number 100. The British Museum 
has added to each a printed label with the inscription "N'tebi, Uganda, 
Equatorial Africa. Presented by Sir Harry Johnston, K.C.B.". 

Sir Frederick Jackson (1938 : 1007), in considering Pogonocichla intensa, said 
it was labelled as collected at "N'tebbi", adding "but was probably collected 
elsewhere, as Doggett was careless in the matter of labelling his specimens 
and given to jotting down localities and dates in a haphazard manner". 
Furthermore Jackson continues "The bird is probably an example of 
P. s. keniensis which has been stained by damp or immersion in some liquid". 
This staining was confirmed by Grant & Mackworth-Praed (1941 : 38), who 
wrote "it must have been treated in some way that has darkened its general 
colour" citing the dry cracked appearance of its bill as "commensurate with 
its having been immersed in some liquid". Capt. C. R. S. Pitman had assured 
them it could not have been collected at Entebbe since it was a high altitude 
forest species. Further they agreed the specimen was "in general characters" 
similar to P. stellata from Kenya, especially Mau specimens ; and "as Mau was 
one of the places visited by Doggett, we propose to fix this place as the type- 
locality of Pogonocichla intensa Sharpe. P. intensa thus becomes a synonym of 
P. stellata guttlfer". 

Mr. C. W. Benson has, at my request, kindly checked the Register in the 
BMNH and found that there was a second thrush and a specimen of Drepan- 
orhynchus (=Nectarinia) reichenowi also collected by Doggett at "Entebbe", the 
former on 22 April and the latter on 7 April 1900. Doggett is known to have 
collected also around Lake Naivasha (Naiposha in the Masai tongue); Sir 
Harry Johnston (1902) wrote that "Doggett collected a special endemic fish" 
there, namely Haplochilichthys antinorii. Confusion as to the whereabouts of 
the locality "Entebbe" stems also from the fact that the specimens were 
labelled as from Uganda. It should, however, be borne in mind that in 1900, 
when they were collected, the Uganda Protectorate extended east to the 
region around Lake Naivasha. The species labelled "Entebbe" are in fact 
not known to occur at Entebbe, Uganda. 

If Doggett had collected on the northwest side of Lake Naivasha, now in 
the Republic of Kenya, then he might well have done so in the forest areas 
near the lake at "N'dabibi", and so it is possible that when he asked a 
tribesman he mistook the name of the locality and "jotted" down "Entebbe". 
N'dabibi, in English means "the place of the clover" (Trifolium), which is 
fitting, as clover is widespread in the highlands above the lake, around what 
are to-day known as the N'dabibi and Eburru (Epuru) Forests. It is to be 

[Bull.B.O.C 1981: 101(4)] 378 

admitted, however, that the altitudes given on Doggett's labels bear little 
relation to the actual altitude of the zone, from the lake at 6180 ft to the 
forest areas of N'dabibi rising to 7000-8000 ft. Doggett puts the forest robin 
at 2700, the thrust at 3800 and the sunbird at 3000 ft — probably merely 
estimates as opposed to measurements. 

White (1962: 139), who placed interna as a subspecies of P. stellata, agreed 
with Grant & Mackworth-Praed {op. cit) that the type-locality was probably 
Mau, and indeed the N'dabibi-Eburru area is really the southern end section 
of the Mau Range, which forms part of the west wall of the Rift Valley. All 
3 species inhabit these forests and even the lake shore gardens, which them- 
selves are above 6000 ft. 

However an unsatisfactory situation arises in that the holotype of intensa 
is evidently a stained specimen and does not resemble specimens from the 
Mau area : the yellow of the ventral surface of the holotype has a rufous or 
brownish stain more comparable to the rich colour of P. s. ruwen^prii, the 
darkest form of P. stellata, while birds from the Mau are certainly not P. s. 
guttifer of Kilimanjaro, as suggested by Grant & Mackworth-Praed {op. cit). 

The only thorough survey in the last 30 years of geographical variation in 
Pogonocichla is by Moreau (195 1). He ignored intensa, making no reference to 
Grant & Mackworth-Praed {op. cit) and designated birds in the geographical 
area which includes Mau as P. stellata keniensis; but intensa antedates keniensis 
and should replace keniensis as the subspecies of P. stellata in that area. Under 
the provisions of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, 
(1964), it does not in fact appear that the status of the holotype of intensa is 
vitiated in any way by its stained state*. I would, therefore, on the evidence 
given, designate the type-locality of Pogonocichla stellata intensa as N'dabibi, at 
the south end of the Mau Range, west of the Rift Valley with co-ordinates 
o°44'S, 3 6° 1 6 E, northwest of Lake Naivasha, Kenya, at an altitude of 6180- 
8000 ft. 

Acknowledgements: I wish to thank Mr. C. W. Benson for much assistance, for bringing out 
the holotype to Malawi for me, for checking the BMNH Register and commenting on, 
with suggestions for improvement, a first draft of this note. My thanks also to Mr. I. C. J. 
Galbraith for the loan of the specimens from the British Museum (Nat. Hist.), and finally 
I tender my thanks to Dr. J. F. Monk for much editorial help with the final typescript. 

References : 

Grant, C. H. B. & Mackworth-Praed, C. W. 1941. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 61 : 38. 

Jackson, Sir F. 1938. The Birds of Kenya Colony and the Uganda Protectorate. Gurney & Jackson : 

Johnston, SirH. 1902. The Uganda Protectorate. Vol. 2: 10. Hutchinson: London. 
Moreau, R. E. 195 1. Geographical variation and plumage sequences in Pogonocichla. Ibis 

White, C. M. N. 1962. A Revised Check List oj the African Shrikes . . .Babblers. Dept. of Game 

& Fisheries : Lusaka. 

Address: G. R. Cunningham-van Someren, Section of Ornithology, Division of Natural 
Sciences, National Museums of Kenya, P.O. Box 40658, Nairobi, Kenya. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 

*P. s. intensa is the name used by Britton, P. L. (Ed.), 1980. Birds of East Africa (p. 143), 
Nairobi: EANHS. 

379 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

Field description of the Obbia Lark Calandrella obbiensis, 

its breeding and distribution 

by J. S. Ash 

Received 21 February iy$i 

The Obbia Lark Calandrella obbiensis was described by Witherby (1905 : 514) 
from a single specimen collected at Obbia (o 5 °i 1 'N, 48°3 2 'E), on the east coast 
of northern Somalia, on 12 January 1903. White (1961) mentions that it is also 
known from Mogadishu (o2°o3'N, 45°2i 'E), but I have been unable to trace 
the original reference (possibly White received the information in lift, from 
Moltoni, since many of the Italian specimens and data were destroyed during 
the war). It was next recorded when a male and female were collected on 1 5 
and 16 September 1962 at Uarsciek (o2°i8'N, 45°47 / E) (Roche 1966). Mack- 
worth-Praed & Grant (i960: 44) give a brief and poor description of the 
bird, and state that there is no information for habits, nest and eggs, breeding 
or calls; curiously, they include a distribution map based apparently on the 
one known specimen indicating a rather extensive range in coastal and inland 
northeastern Somalia (as in the case of White above, they may have received 
further unpublished information from Moltoni). Neither the description of 
the bird nor the coloured plate aid in its identification, but an adequate 
description is given in Witherby {op. cit.). Some of the missing information is 
now available and is presented here. 

When I arrived in Somalia in August 1978, 1 was at once puzzled over the 
identification of a small lark, unquestionably the most numerous passerine 
present on the coastal dunes round Mogadishu. The only literature available 
was Mackworth-Praed & Grant {op. cit.) y and this proved to be unhelpful, 
although the possibility of these birds being Obbia Larks was not dismissed. 
I circulated a description among friends who might be able to help, which 
resulted in P. R. Colston at the British Museum commenting that my 
description, after it had been compared with the type specimen of C. obbiensis, 
"was better than that in Mackworth-Praed & Grant". The type, incidentally, 
is in poor condition. 


During 1 978-1 980 I travelled widely in Somalia and examined many 
stretches of the coastline. Obbia Larks are confined to a very narrow coastal 
strip in the southern part of their range (Fig. 1), from 30 km south of Moga- 
dishu at Hal Hambo (oi°54'N, 45°o5 'E), to o3°i7'N, 46°5o / E at 74 km north 
of Adale (o2°45'N, 46°i9'E). At this point on a journey with J. E. Miskell 
we were obliged to turn back because of soft sand and follow an inland route. 
No more Obbia Larks were seen for 2 days until we were 4 km east of 
Harardere (04°} 8 'N, 47°$ 2 'E), where we saw several at 16 km inland. From 
here onwards as we approached the coast again they became very common all 
the way to Obbia; beyond Obbia we turned inland and saw no more of them. 
Almost certainly their distribution is continuous along the 170 km of coast 
we missed. From my interpretation of the maps the habitat would seem to be 
unsuitable to the north of Obbia, and we saw no trace of the species at other 
points on the coast visited in the next few days, including Eil (o7°59'N, 
49°48'E),HafunBay(io°2 5 'N, 5i°io'E) andTohen(n°44'N, 5i°i5'E). 

Elsewhere in the country no Obbia Larks were seen in coastal areas from 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 


Zeila (n°2i'N, 43°28'E) to Berbera (io°26'N, 45°o2 , E), around Mait 
(io°58'N, 47°o4'E), from Alula (n°58'N, 5o°i5'E) to Tohen, in the north; 
nor round Merca (oi°43'N, 44°46'E), Brava (oi°o6 / N, 44°o3'E) and much of 
the coast from Kismayu (oo°22'S, 42°32'E) to Kiamboni (oi°4o'S, 4i°36'E). 









^ ^ 

100 km 



Fig. 1. Distribution of the Obbia Lark Calandrella obbiensis in Somalia. The crosses indicate 
areas where the species has been recorded; the broken line indicates the route followed on a 
journey in 1980. Map drawn by Alain Peeters. 

The distribution of the Obbia Lark thus can be described as occupying a 
narrow coastal belt 570 km long from Obbia in the north to just south of 
Mogadishu; in the north it extends up to 16 km inland, but in the south not 
much more than 1 km. The total area inhabited by the species cannot be more 
than 1500 km 2 , and is probably nearer to 1200 km 2 . However, mostly it is 
abundant where it occurs and there is no reason to believe that it is endangered 
in any way. 

Field Description 

A small short-tailed lark, c. 12 cm long, whole of upperparts brown, 
streaked with darker shades of brown; a pale patch just above bill (not present 
in all birds) ; a distinct whitish supercilium extending in front of and behind 

38i [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

eye, but not always reaching the bill, sometimes divided vertically to form 
two equal halves; dark line through eye; a double moustachial streak on each 
side; throat white; rest of underparts whitish heavily streaked in almost 
regular lines to lower breast and on flanks ; tail with central feathers as mantle, 
contrasting with the remainder which are uniformly dark brown, sometimes 
showing a trace of white along the outer feather; bill fairly stout, dark above 
and yellowish below ; legs pink. 

Six nests were found in 1979 and evidence obtained for breeding in several 
other pairs observed. The eggs collected are being deposited in the Smith- 
sonian Institution. 

a. 14 km north of Uarsciek, 8 June, building; 2 eggs on 15 June were 

b. 41 km north of Uarsciek, 8 June, nest with 1 addled egg and one almost 
fully fledged pullus, which left the nest on being investigated. 

c. 17 km north of Uarsciek, 1 5 June, 2 eggs. 

d. 15 km north of Mogadishu, 17 June, 2 erythristic eggs; on 21 June it had 
been trampled by goats. 

e. Gezira (oi°57'N, 45°n'E), 11 July, 1 addled egg and a newly hatched 
pullus; the chick was there on 16 July, but the nest was empty on 21 

/. Gezira, 1 2 July, 3 pulli ready to leave the nest. 

In addition, a near fully-fledged pullus together with 2 Anthus melindae pulli 
were found in a regurgitated bolus from an unidentified predator, possibly a 
jackal, on 8 June, and adults of 3 pairs were seen collecting food on 28 and 
29 June and 14 July. Clutch size was probably 2 in 5 nests, although two of 
these may not have been complete, and 3 in another, with eggs laid in May 
and June and possibly July. Further breeding might occur in November- 
December in some years of good rain, and there is some support for this from 
the 5 males collected December-February showing testicular development 
(Table 1). 

Tabe 1 
Mensural data on 6 Obbia Larks Calandrella obbiensis 

Collection No. Sex 






178 $ 











298! <J 


8.i. 79 




299t <* 






348* ? 






349 <* 






350 <J 






Notes, f = Tarsi dull flesh, 

*= Tarsi pale 

brown and Iris brown. 

Wing-length in mm, 

weight in g, largest 

diameter of testis or ova in mm. 


Nest sites. The sites of nests a-c were similar — on the southeast side of a 
thin plant (offering very little shade) on dunes with sparse vegetation, 2 at 
40 m and one at 150 m inland above high tide line. In a the plant was a 
h,ithospermum sp, in b a species of grass and in c a low rush Juncus sp. In d the 
nest was built in a scrape below a thin cover of Zygophyllum simplex, making it 
almost invisible from above, within 20 m of the spray zone above a low sea 
cliff. Nest e was completely exposed, with a very light growth of a legume 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 382 

to the south and west (possibly grazed off) and offering no shade; it was on 
dunes 50 m from the high tide line. Nest/ was in very sparse cover of a grass 
Dactyloctenium aegyptiacum, a sedge Cyperus sp. and a legume Indigophora sp., 
but the nest was completely covered with strands of the creeping Indigophora; 
it was on dunes 5 00 m from the high tide line. 

Nests. Nest a was built into a deep cup-shaped depression in the sand, a 
rather substantial nest of thin dry rootlets, pieces of withered vegetation, 
some woolly Aerva seeds and dead marine Cymodocea leaves, and 19 pieces of 
thick white string varying from 6.5 to 17.5 cm in length, to the extraordinary 
total of 195.5 cm. Internal diameter 50 mm, external diameter 90 mm, 
internal depth of cup 5 o mm, so that the eggs were actually below ground 
level. Nest b was a shallow saucer-shaped depression, very sparsely lined with 
a few strands of dry grass. Nest c was a slightly wider and flatter cup-shaped 
nest than <z, similarly placed in an excavated depression in the sand, entirely 
made of dry rootlets and a few dead Cymodocea leaves. Internal diameter 
5 5 mm, external diameter 85 mm, internal depth of cup 30 mm. Nest d had 
an internal diameter of 60 mm, external diameter 8 5 mm and internal depth 
40 mm. Nest e had an internal diameter of 50 mm, external diameter 80 mm 
and internal depth 3 5 mm. Thus the 4 measured nests had internal diameters 
of 50-60 mm, external diameters of 80-90 mm and internal cup depths of 
30-50 mm. 

Eggs. In nest a, one egg was a uniform oval without a broader end, 19.2 x 
13.0 mm, creamy white freckled with brown and grey, more so for one third 
of one end, where 10% of the ground colour was visible; the second was 
much more sparesly freckled and blunt pyriform in shape, 18.6 x 13.2 mm. 
In nest b, the egg was similar in shape to the first described from a, but entirely 
different in colour, having a greyish-white ground, finely and uniformly 
speckled all over with grey and brown and having a few larger freckles at one 
end, and a few faint grey hairlines, 18.1 x 13.8 mm. In nest c y one egg was 
similar in shape to the first from nest a, but had an off-white ground colour 
closely and uniformly speckled with brown, 17.9 x 13.9 mm; the second was 
slightly rounder, with only half as many dark markings composing larger 
freckles, many of which were concentrated in a ring one third of the egg's 
length from one end, 18.0 x 14.0 mm. In nest d, the eggs were erythristic, but 
were destroyed before they could be measured or described in detail. In nest 
e, the addled egg measured 17.5 x 13.1 mm, and had a creamy ground colour, 
speckled all over with light brown, with a few larger freckles, and a denser 
band at the slightly broader end. The 6 eggs from 4 nests are thus variable in 
colour and size, averaging 18.2 x 13.5 mm. 

Behaviour and Habitat 

The Obbia Lark is very common in pairs and small parties in its preferred 
habitat throughout the year. Restless and very active, seldom staying to feed 
in one place before flying off, often high in the air for 100 m or more to 
another similar site. Parties of sometimes up to 30 birds are frequent, even in 
the breeding season, but just what is the status of these birds is not known. 
When feeding they often adopt a rather hunched attitude and then look 
remarkably finch- or Sermus-like. They also run about actively and clamber 
nimbly over low vegetation, rather than through or under it. Some birds are 
easily approachable, but others are "wild" and fly away at even distant 

383 [Bull. B.O.C. 19S1: 101(4)] 

approach. In the strong monsoon winds, they are difficult to observe in open 
terrain, where there is low-level driven sand and bright sunlight. 

The habitat is sand dunes close to the sea, and rolling plains, with patches 
of low, usually heavily grazed, halophytic scrub and herbaceous growth. 

The following ground-nesting species breed in the same area where Obbia 
Larks have been observed, but not all occur throughout its range:- Crowned 
Lapwing Vanellus coronatus, Kittlitz's Sand Plover Charadrius pecuarius, Cream- 
coloured Courser Cursorius cursor, Little Tern Sterna albifrons, Red-winged 
Bush Lark Mirafra hypermetra, Somali Long-billed Lark M. somalica, Lesser 
Hoopoe Lark Alaemon hamertoni, Short-crested Lark Galerida theklae, White- 
fronted Sparrowlark Eremopterix nigriceps and Malindi Pipit Anthus melindae. 
No contact has been observed between Obbia Larks and any of these species. 

Acknowledgements: I wish to thank Dr. R. L. Bruggers and AH A. Murshid, with whom the 
first 2 nests were found, Peter Colston for his comments on my field notes, my wife for the 
identification of plants, Dr. J. F. Monk for valuable comments, and Alain Peeters for draw- 
ing the map. 

References : 

Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. i960. African Handbook of Birds. Series 1, vol 2. 

Birds of Eastern and North Eastern Africa. 2nd Ed. Longmans Green & Co : London. 
Roche, J. 1966. Recherches ecologiques et systematiques sur les oiseaux de la Republique 

de Somalie (partie ex-italienne). MonitoreZool. Ital. (Suppl.) 74: 44-79. 
White, C. M. N. 1961. A Revised Check List of African Broadbills... Pipits. Government 

Printer: Lusaka. 
Witherby, H. F. 1905. On a collection of birds from Somaliland. Ibis 1905 : 509-524. 

Address: Dr. J. S. Ash, Division of Birds, National Museum of Natural History, Smith- 
sonian Institution, Washington, D.C. 20560, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

The first evidence of Demoiselle Crane Anthropoides 
virgo and Pygmy Cormorant Phalacrocorax pygmaeus 

in Britain. 

by Graham S. Gowks 

Recieved 4 March 1981 

Climatic and environmental change both influence the geographical distribu- 
tion of avifaunas. Recently, the Demoiselle Crane Anthropoides virgo and 
Pygmy Cormorant Phalacrocorax pygmaeus, 2 steppe species not previously 
known from the British Isles, have been identified from bones excavated at 
2 quite unrelated sites, one Pleistocene and one late Middle Age. The 
discovered remains may be representative of either resident or migrant 
populations now lost to Britain due to changes in climate or habitat. 
Alternatively, but much less probably, this may only be fortuitous evidence 
of 2 individual stragglers which once visited England. 

anthropoides virgo Demoiselle Crane 

While undertaking the re-examination of avian bones in the A. L. 
Armstrong (1924-35) collection, excavated from Pin Hole Cave, Creswell 
Crags, Derbyshire, Mr. R. D. S. Jenkinson requested that a premaxilla be iden- 
tified for him at the British Museum (Nat. Hist.), Tring. After comparison 
with material in the osteological collection, I have no doubt that this tip of the 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 384 

maxilla belongs to Anthropoides virgo. Until now only the larger Common 
Crane Grus grus, and the still larger, extinct crane G. primigenia have been 
identified from Pleistocene and archaeological sites in Britain (Harrison & 
Cowles 1977). Mr. Jenkinson has informed me that, although investigations 
into the stratification of Pin Hole Cave are not yet concluded, the premaxilla 
can be definitely dated as Pleistocene, and is possibly from the Middle Last 
Glacial, about 30,000 years B.C. 

Today the Demoiselle Crane breeds in southern Russia and scattered 
localities across central Asia to Mongolia and southern Siberia (Walkinshaw 
1973), wintering in parts of northeastern [and north central] Africa, India, 
Pakistan, Burma and China (Peters 1934). It is now extinct in Rumania, 
Tunisia and probably Algeria, but has recently been recorded breeding in 
Turkey (Cramp & Simmons 1980). This small crane prefers the boreal, 
steppe and semi-desert climatic zones (Voous i960), but is said to have 
occurred twice in Britain, though both records have subsequently been 
discredited (Witherby et al. 1943). Its occurrence in glacial Britain would 
perhaps coincide with the emergence of suitable steppe vegetation during a 
temporary retreat in the ice sheet which covered parts of the country during 
the Pleistocene epoch. Other fossil bone material of A. virgo is known from 
Pleistocene deposits in France and Russia (Brodkorb 1967). 

A complete list of the avifauna from Pin Hole Cave will be published by 
Bramwell & Jenkinson in due course, and I am grateful for their permission 
to publish in advance this note for ornithologists. The premaxilla of A. virgo 
is deposited in the collection of the Creswell Crags Visitor Centre, Derbyshire, 
specimen number PH (F) 30,395. 
phalacrocorax pygmaeus Pygmy Cormorant 

During the examination of bhnes excavated from an archaeological site in 
Stert Street, Abingdon, Oxfordshire, Mr. R. Wilson discovered 2 unusual 
avian carpometacarpi. Measurements indicate that the carpometacarpi are a 
pair, and form part of the left and right wings of one individual bird. The 
bones were recovered from debris which filled a disused, late mediaeval 
timber-lined well shaft (reference F34), dated 1 5 th to 16th century (Parrington 
1979). Because the bones did not match those of any species previously 
recorded from other British archaeological sites, one bone was submitted to 
the BMNH, Tring for identification. After an extensive study of the anatomi- 
cal collections, the carpometacarpus was unexpectedly found to fit that of the 
Pygmy Cormorant Phalacrocorax pygmaeus. This species is not represented in 
the skeleton collection and to enable a direct comparison to be made, a 
corresponding bone was dissected out from an alcohol preserved specimen. 
The bone is so unusual in anatomical character and size, that there is 
absolutely no doubt that it does belong to P. pygmaeus, and this is the first 
record of this species occurring in the British Isles. 

The breeding range of P. pygmaeus is at present recorded as Albania, 
Macedonia, Rumania, Bulgaria, Greece, the Black, Caspian and Aral Seas, 
and Asia Minor east to Iran. Formerly it bred in Hungary and Algeria (Peters 
1979). The species is both sedentary and migratory, but movement is generally 
believed to be over short distances only. It has occurred accidentally in 
France, southern Sweden, Germany, Poland and some countries south to 
northern Tunisia (Cramp & Simmons 1977). 

The Pygmy Cormorant prefers the temperate mediterranean and steppe 

385 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

climatic zones (Voous i960), so it is just possible that the remains of the bird 
found at Abingdon represents an accidental visitor to i5th-i6th century- 
England. Alternatively there may have been a small population of Pygmy 
Cormorants existing at Abingdon in mediaeval times. The climate in Europe 
had reached the warmest period for several thousand years during 1 100-1 3 10 
(Lamb 1977), and the temperate weather with mild winters then would have 
favoured the establishment of the Pygmy Cormorant in England. The abbey 
vineyard at Abingdon is recorded as nourishing at about 1380, and is proof 
of the continuing equitable climate at that time. A climatic change to much 
colder weather took place in late mediaeval England, with severe winters in 
the 1430s and in the mid 16th century (Lamb 1977), which would adversely 
effect a resident population of P. pygmaeus. The change had already caused the 
decline of the English vineyards, and the one at Abingdon was abandoned in 

This small cormorant is predominantly an inland species, requiring dense 
reedbeds growing beside fresh water rivers, lakes or marshes, food being 
obtained from the slow flowing or shallow parts of rivers and streams, or 
in marshes and flood plains (Cramp & Simmons 1977). The 'wetlands' in 
the vicinity of mediaeval Abingdon and the countryside to the south are 
served by the rivers Thames and Ock. Proof of the old marshlands can still 
be seen in the long, mediaeval, raised stone causeway which was constructed 
at the beginning of the 15 th century to give access across the flooded and 
marshy ground between Abingdon and Culham Bridge, to the south. 

The draining of many suitable marshy habitats in various countries, even 
over the last century, has been responsible for a noticeable reduction in the 
distribution of P. pygmaeus. Cramp & Simmons (1977) record that the bird 
has not bred in Hungary for the last one hundred years, and that many old 
nesting colonies are now abandoned in Yugoslavia and in other parts of the 
range. The species is now extinct in Algeria, although it was present there in 
the 19th century (Heim de Balsac & Mayaud 1962). 

The bones found at Abingdon establish that at least one Pygmy Cormorant 
was present in Britain 400 years or so ago. It was killed almost certainly for 
eating, as were other wild birds, its remains being thrown down the disused 
well, together with other remains from the table, as listed by various 
specialists {in Parrington 1979). It was a common practice to dispose of 
household refuse in this way at the time. The edibility of many bird species 
has been studied by Cott & Benson (1971). They rated the palatability of 
cormorants, and in particular P. carbo, highly, describing the flesh as brown 
and tender, reminiscent of liver. This fact may not have helped the survival 
of the Abingdon Cormorant. 

The climatic factor and man's predation, coupled with the draining of the 
land, with the resulting loss of natural habitat, would certainly have threatened 
the survival of the Pygmy Cormorant population. Whether the Abingdon 
bird was a single accidental visitor, or one of a declining and now extinct 
population it is impossible to prove from this one record. Archaeological 
excavations are still in progress in the area and these may provide further 
evidence. The 2 carpometacarpi of P. pygmaeus are at present in the possession 
of the Oxfordshire Archaeological Unit, Hythe Bridge Street, Oxford. 

Acknowledgements: I am extremely grateful to Dr. Don Bramwell, Rogan D. S. Jenkinson 
and Bob Wilson for their kind cooperation. My thanks goes to Dr. Bramwell for suggesting 
that the Abingdon 'bone of contention' might be that of P. pygmaeus. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1 981: 101(4)] 386 

References : 

Brodkorb, P. 1967. Catalogue of fossil bkds.Bull. Fla. St. Mus.Biol. Sci. 11: 152. 
Cott, H. B. & Benson, C. W. 1971. The palatability of birds, mainly based upon observa- 
tions of a tasting panel in Zambia. Ostrich Suppl. 8 : 3 5 7-3 84. 
Cramp, S. & Simmons, K. E. L. (eds.) 1977. Handbook of the Birds of Europe, the Middle East 

and North Africa. Vol. 1 : 216-219. Oxford University Press : Oxford. 
Cramp, S. & Simmons, K. E. L. (eds.) 1980. Handbook of the Birds of Europe, the Middle East 

and North Africa. Vol. 2 : 63 1-636. Oxford University Press : Oxford. 
Harrison, C. J. O. & Cowles, G. S. 1977. The extinct large cranes of the north-west 

Palaearctic./. Archaeol. Sci. 4: 25-27. 
Heim de Balsac, H. & Mayaud, N. 1962. Les Oiseaux du Nord-Ouest de VAfrique. P. 

Lechavalier: Paris. 
Lamb. H. H. 1977. Climate, Present, Past and Future. Methuen & Co. : London. 
Parrington, M. 1979. Excavations at Stert Street, Abingdon, Oxon. Oxoniensia 44: 1-25. 
Peters, J. L. 1934. Check-list of Birds of the World. 2: 153. Harvard University Press: 

Cambridge, Mass. 
— 1979. Check-list of Birds of the World. 1 (revised): 178. Museum of Comparative 

Zoology : Cambridge, Mass. 
Voous, K. H. i960. Atlas of European Birds. Nelson: London. 
Walkinshaw, L. H. i^j^.Cranesofthe World. Winchester Press: New York. 
Witherby, H. F., Jourdain, F. C. R., Ticehurst, N. F. & Tucker, B. W. 1943 (revised). 

Handbook of British Birds. 4: 455. Witherby: London. 

Address: G. S. Cowles, British Museum (Natural History), Tring, Herts, England. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

A Note on the birds of the Maldive Islands 

by R. S. R. Fitter 

Received iy March 19 81 

The literature on the birds of the Maldive Islands (Indian Ocean, between 
c. 8°N and c. i°S) is so sparse (Duncan 1973, Gadow & Gardiner 1903, 
Phillips & Sim 1958, Strickland & Jenner 1978, Watson et al. 1963) that the 
results of even so short a stay as one week on a single island may be worth 
recording. My wife and I visited Villingili, an island of some 200 acres, at the 
south end of the North Male atoll, very largely devoted to tourism, from 
6-13 February 1981. The vegetation consists almost entirely of coconut 
palms, with associated scrub and pan-tropical weeds, and a fringe of 
mangroves on the open shore. Approximately half the island's coastline is 
unspoiled sandy beach or coral rock, the rest being occupied by a tourist 
facility. A coral reef surrounds the whole island. 

In general we were struck by the extraordinary lack of sea and shore birds, 
both on and off shore. Passerines were also virtually absent. Had there been 
any freshwater marsh or brackish lagoon, the list of waders would doubtless 
have been much longer. 

Mammals present were Rabbits Oryctolagus cuniculus, presumably escaped 
domesticated forms as some were black, and one small unidentified rodent. 
Three species of reptile were frequent : the agamid lizard Calots versicolor, the 
smaller skink Riopa albopunctata and indoors the gecko Hemidactylus frenatus. 
Two species of butterfly, a few small moths, a dragonfly, a large black bee 
with a yellow patch and sundry mosquitoes, muscids and other Diptera were 
also noted. 

Twelve species of bird were definitely identified:- 

387 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

Grey Heron Ardea cinerea. Up to 7 constantly on shore and reefs or flying 

Small Green Heron Butorides striatus. 1-2 seen frequently on reefs. 

Indian Pond Heron Ardeolagrayii. At least 3 present inland. 

Honey Buzzard Perms apivorus. One overhead 13 Feb., identified as a 
probable bird of the year by the characteristic tail pattern with fine cross bars 
between the main broad bars. 

Domestic Fowl Gallus gallus. Appeared to be established ferally; a brood 
of young seen well away from the settlement. 

White-breasted Waterhen Amaurornis phoenkurus. One twice seen well 
inland. Phillips & Sim (1958) noted that some had become entirely terrestrial. 

Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus. One on 1 2 Feb. 

Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos. Common all over the island, 
frequently feeding on sandy tracks inland as well as on the shore. 

Indian Cuckoo Cuculus micropterus. One seen frequently. 

Koel Eudjnamys scolopacea. At least 3 pairs present. House Crows Corpus 
splendens were exterminated some 10 years previously, so that how the Koels 
are maintaining themselves is something of a mystery. 

European Swallow Hirundo rustica. Small parties seen twice. 

Common Myna Acridotheres tristis. One seen several times. 

In addition, a single tern, probably Sterna sumatrana, was seen twice and on 
8 Feb. Mrs. M. S. Fitter briefly saw a bird which could have been a Bronze- 
wing pigeon Chalcophaps indica (blue on head and nape clearly seen), but 
unfortunately the bird was not seen again. 

References : 

Duncan, J. 1973. The birds of Gan. R.A.F. Orn. Soc. Newsletter 19: 4-7. 

Gadow, H. & Gardiner, J. S. 1903. Fauna and Geography of the Maldive and Laccadive 

Archipelagoes!. Cambridge: Univ. Press. 
Phillips, W. W. A. & Sim, R. W. 1958. J.Bombay N.H.S. 55 : 195-217. 
Strickland, M. J. & Jenner, J. C. 1978. A report on the birds of Addu Atoll (Maldive 

Islands). J.Bombay N.H.S. 74: 487-500. 
Watson, G. E., Zusi, R. L. & Storer, R. E. 1963. Preliminary Field Guide to the Birds of the 

Indian Ocean. Washington, D.C. : Smiths. Inst. 

Address: R. S. R. Fitter, Drifts, Chinnor Hill, Oxford OX9 4BS, England. 
©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Relationships between hermit hummingbirds and their 
food plants in eastern Ecuador 

by Barbara K. Snow 

Received 4 March ipSi 

Hermit hummingbirds, which forage mainly at low levels in forest, provide 
some striking examples of co-evolution between humming birds and the 
flowers from which they take nectar. Their feeding ecology has been studied 
in Trinidad (Snow & Snow 1972, Snow 1973), the Kanaku Mountains of 
Guyana (Snow 1973), and Costa Rica (Stiles 1975, Snow 1977, Stiles & Wolf 
1979). The present paper gives the results of observations made in one of the 
richest neotropical forest areas, the eastern foothills of the Andes, and 
discusses the co-evolutionary relationships between this group of humming- 
birds and their food-plants. 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 388 

For 4 weeks, 7 July to 2 August 1976, 1 was camping with other members 
of the 1976 Ecuadorean-British Los Tayos Expedition at a height of 600 m 
in the forested foothills of the Andes in the Morana-Santiago province of 
Ecuador (3 06'S, 78 12'W). The nearest drainage system was that related 
to the Los Tayos caves into which the streams sank, eventually to join the 
Rio Coangos which lay c. 240 m below and to the northwest of the camp. 
The area was covered with primary rain forest except for a felled area in the 
immediate vicinity of the camp and patches of Indian cultivation, some 
abandoned. This cultivation was confined to the few more level areas, 
mostly small in extent, except for a wide strip, about 30 m above the Rio 
Coangos, which extended for approximately 1200 m. Apart from these flat 
areas the hillsides are extremely steep and the forests covering them had an 
abundant herbaceous layer. Within the study area, extending from just below 
the ridge (c. 900 m) above the Los Tayos stream to the eastern banks of the 
Rio Coangos, the following 6 hermit hummingbird species were recorded 
feeding : Tbrenetes leucurus, Phaethornis superciliosus , P. bourcieri, P. longuemareus , 
Eutoxeres aquila and E. condamini. Their weights and measurements are shown 
in Table 1 . 

Table i 
Weights and measurements of Los Tayos hermit hummingbirds 

wing (mm) weight (g) 

culmen (mm)* 

Threnetes leucurus 

61(9) 6.0(2) 


Phaethornis superciliosus 

62(10) 6.5(3) 


Phaetbornis bourcieri 

56(9) 4.1 (8)f 


Phaethornis longuemareus 

35(2) 3.2(23): 


Eutoxeres aquila 

74(10) 12.2(1) 


Eutoxeres condamini 

72(9) i3-o(3) 


Weights were taken in the field at Los Tayos unless stated otherwise. Figures in parentheses 

are number of specimens. 

♦Length of total culmen, not exposed culmen. 

t7 weights from Surinam 

supplied by Dr. F. Haverschmidt. 

\ Weight from Snow & Snow 1963. 

Hermit hummingbirds usually feed at low levels, mostly on herbaceous 
plants but also on vines that flower low down and on bromeliads. Therefore 
to investigate the range of flowers at which these hermits were feeding, 
watches of half an hour, or multiples thereof, were kept on all plants found 
flowering below a height of 5 m above the ground and which had tubular 
corollas coloured yellow, orange or red. Watches were extended to flowers 
of other colours if any hermit hummingbird was seen feeding at them. 
Within these criteria probably all the common plants in flower in July were 
observed in the study area. Observations were not made in cleared ground 
except on Heliconia arT. wagneriana. The flowers at which the hermits were 
recorded feeding are listed in Table 2 and their corolla shapes are shown in 
Figures 1-3. Many of these plants have not yet been identified, but specimens 
of all of them were collected by the botanists on the expedition and are 
housed at the Royal Botanic garden, Edinburgh. They are referred to here 
by the botanists' collection numbers. 

In addition to the hermits, 7 species of non-hermit hummingbirds were 
seen or collected in the Los Tayos locality (Albuja & de Vries 1977). Four of 
these (Dory/era jobannae, Campy lopterus villaviscencio , Popelairia popelairii and 
Tapbrospilus hypostictus) were not observed competing or interacting with any 

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[Bull.B.O.C. 19S1: 101(4)] 390 

of the hermit hummingbirds. Thalurania furcata and Chrysuronia oenone were 
territorial over some plant species {Costus, Palkourea) at which P. longuemareus 
also fed. Heliothryx aurita was a nectar-thief, piercing the corolla tube and 
taking nectar from Heliconia 306. 
Habitat preferences 

There were some recognisable differences in habitat preference between 
the 6 hermit species. Both T. leucurns and P. longuemareus frequented second 
growth associated with cultivation as well as forest, and were commoner at 
the Rio Coagnos level, where there was a lek of P. longuemareus, than else- 
where. P. longuemareus (but not T. leucurus) was occasionally seen feeding 
along streams, while T. leucurus (but not P. longuemareus) was seen on the 
forest slopes well above the Los Tayos stream beds. P. superciliosus was the 
most abundant hermit of the Los Tayos drainage system and commonly fed 
along its stream banks and also along the Rio Coangos. It was recorded at 
c. 900 m near the ridge, feeding on the ground bromeliad Pitcaimia aff. 
quesnelioides. It visited forest edge but not more extensive second growth. 
P. bourcieri was rather scarce and was not seen below the level of the Los 
Tayos stream along which it occasionally fed. It also fed up to c. 700 m on 
2 bromeliads, Vriesea rubra and Gu^mania melinonis. Neither Eutoxeres species 
was seen feeding above 600 m, but both were found along the Los Tayos 
stream and Rio Coangos. E. condamini was commoner at dispersed nectar 
sources, including some in second growth. 
Flower preferences 

Bill shape and to a lesser extent bill length are the chief characters with 
which flower preferences of the different hermit species could be matched 
(Figs. 1-3, Tables 1, 2). The most striking match is between the bills of the 
sicklebills Eutoxeres and 3 of the Heliconias (35, 23 and 306) and Centropogon 
cornutus (Fig. id). Only the sicklebills fed at these 4 plants except for a nectar 
thief, Heliothryx aurita , which has a short straight bill and was seen piercing 
the corollas of Heliconia 306. I spent sufficient time watching these 4 plants 
(Table 2) to feel confident that no other hummingbird was foraging at them; 
so in this area at least they are probably dependent on the sicklebills for 
cross-pollination. Both E. aquila and E. condamini perch while feeding at 
heliconias. Heliconia aff. vellerigera and Heliconia 35 both have pendent, 
distichous inflorescences (Fig. ia, b); the bracts which contain the flowers 
open downwards and the sicklebills perch on the bract below and stretch up 
with head tilted back to insert their beaks into the corolla above. In Heliconia 
306, the bracts do not enclose the corolla — hence its susceptibility to nectar 
thieves — but a succession of flowers assume an upright position, growing 
from the axil of the bract and facing outwards (Fig. ic). 

As the Eutoxeres species appear to have exclusive legitimate access to these 
4 plant species, territorial behaviour to exclude any other hummingbird 
except congenerics is superfluous. However in places, Heliconia 35 and 
Heliconia aff. vellerigera grew in very large clumps and a 4-5 foot band of 
Centropogon cornutus was flowering along 40 consecutive metres of the Rio 
Coangos banks; so all these plants were potentially very concentrated sources 
of nectar. Equivalent nectar concentrations in flowers with less specialized 
corolla shapes would, on the other hand, be defended as feeding territories 
(Stiles 1975, Lyon 1976), with much inter- and intra-specific competition. 
E. aquila and E. condamini are not very different in size; condamini has a 


[Bull.B.O.C. r?Si: 101(4)] 

— H c * 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 


Fig. 3. Hummingbird abbreviations as in Fig. 2. (a) Gesneriaceae 237 (P.s. and P.I.), 
(b) Heliconia 57 (P.s.), corolla and enclosing bract and (below) with free part of bract 
removed, (c) Heliconia 56 (P.s., T. leucurus & E. condamini), inflorescence and corolla without 
bract, (d) Costus sp. (P.l. & non-hermits), inflorescence cone and corolla removed from cone. 

slightly shorter wing but a longer bill (Table 1), so some behavioural 
differences between them might be expected for co-existence. In fact E. aquila 
showed some territorial behaviour and was seen driving off E. condamini and 
conspecifics. Only E. aquila was seen feeding at the 2 shaft entrances of the 
Los Tayos caves, which provided permanent light gaps enabling large 
stands of Heliconia 3 5 and Heliconia aff. vellerigera to grow there. Here also, in 
the early mornings, it uttered advertising songs from solitary perches. On 
the other hand, no advertising song or territorial behaviour was heard or 
seen from E. condamini and its foraging suggested interstitial traplining 
(sensu Colwell 1973). Thus it fed at Heliconia 56 at which E. aquila was not 
seen to forage. T. leucurus and P. superciliosus also fed at Heliconia 5 6, hovering 
at the higher flowers free of entangling vegetation; whereas E. condamini 
perched to feed often at the lower flowers closely entangled in undergrowth. 
The two patches of Heliconia 3 5 at which E. condamini was seen to forage were 
small ones, also in dense second growth. E. condamini foraged at the large 
stretches of Centropogon cornutus, but was here occasionally driven off by 
E. aquila. When feeding at C. cornutus, E. aquila fed perched with folded 
wings, whereas E. condamini only did so at about a third of the flowers it 
visited, at the other two thirds clinging on, but continuing to beat its wings 
while feeding. 

The straight bill of P. bourcieri closely matches the corollas of the 3 flower 
species at which it foraged. It shared one, Gesneriaceae 17, with P. super- 
ciliosus, but it is very unlikely that any other hermits beside P. bourcieri fed at 
the 2 bromeliads at which it foraged. A very narrow constriction of the 

3 9 3 [Bull.B.O. C. 19 81: 1 o 1(4) ] 

corolla (to about 1 mm diameter) in both the bromeliads, at the aperture in 
Vriesea rubra and in the middle of the corolla tube in Gut^mania aff. melinonis 
(Fig. 2b, a), would make entry by a hermit with a curved bill virtually 

Table 3 
Percentage feeding at flowers of different corolla lengths by 3 hermit hummingbirds. 

Corolla lengths (mm) Total 

20-29 30—39 40-49 50—5 9 records 

P . superciliosus 2 8 25 65 137 

P.bourcieri 67 33 12 

P. longuemareus 39 56 2 87 

P. superciliosus was seen foraging at 1 1 different flower species, with corolla 
shapes varying from almost straight to moderately curved. Over half of 
these were also visited by ot herspecies of hermit, mostly by P. longuemareus. 
P. superciliosus differed from the latter mainly by its preference for flowers 
with longer corolla tubes (Table 3). The only flower species in full bloom 
for which P. superciliosus appeared to be the exclusive pollinator was the 
bromeliad Pitcairnia aff. quesnelioides with a very long corolla. There was 
fairly conclusive evidence that it avoided the small-flowered Costus whose 
inflorescence cone grows at ground level, as one Costus and a ground-living 
bromeliad, Aechmea aff. strobilacea, were growing close together and could 
be watched simultaneously. While P. longuemareus visited both plants, P. 
superciliosus came regularly to the bromeliad but ignored the Costus. 

Three of the plant species at which P. longuemareus foraged, Palicourea sp., 
Gurania sp. and Costus, were also exploited by small non-hermit humming- 
birds (Thalurania fur cat a and Chrysuronia oenone). The effective corolla lengths 
(sensu Stiles 1975) of these 3 plants were between 22 and 26 mm, compared 
to 41-54 mm for the 4 species at which both P. longuemareus and P. superciliosus 

In spite of the incompleteness of the data, some comparisons with the 
feeding of hermits elsewhere are worth drawing. A study by Stiles (1975) of 
the nectar foraging of 4 hermits (P. superciliosus, E. aquila, Threnetes ruckeri 
and Glaucis hirsutd) on 9 Heliconia species in the Caribbean Lowland tropics 
of Costa Rica showed P. superciliosus to be the most abundant hermit, 
foraging at all the heliconias, whereas E. aquila fed at only one species, 
H. pogonantha, which has the most curved corolla. However, all the other 
hermits and 5 non-hermits also fed at H. pogonantha, so E. aquila did not 
have exclusive nectar foraging at any heliconia as the two Eutoxeres species 
appeared to have at Los Tayos. 

Possibly the very high rainfall areas of the eastern slopes of the Andes 
are the centre of evolution of Eutoxeres, where co-evolution with heliconias 
is most advanced. E. condamini is confined to this region, but E. aquila occurs 
also on the Pacific slopes of Colombia and Ecuador, and extends north to 
Costa Rica. Possibly E. aquila is derived from a population that was isolated 
in one of the northwestern forest refuges during the Pleistocene (Haffer 1974) 
and subsequently spread south to overlap with E. condamini. That it may 
still be spreading south is suggested by a single specimen recently collected 
in northeast Peru (Zimmer 1950), while E. condamini ranges to southeast 

It is interesting that in Costa Rica the 2 main nectar sources for E. aquila 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 394 

are the pogonantha group of Heliconias (Stiles 1979a) and Centropogon species 
(Stiles, pers. comm.), so near the extremes of the range of JS. aquila it appears 
largely to depend on the same plant genera. Heliconia aff. velkrigera and 
Heliconia 3 5 have many characters in common with the pogonantha group, 
e.g. very large pendent distichous inflorescences which showed much 
evidence of being long-lived. 

In the tropical forest of the Kanaku mountains of southern Guyana (Snow 
1973), P. superciliosus was the most abundant of the 4 resident species of 
hermits, the others being G. hirsuta, T. leucurus and Phaethornis ruber. Thus in 
3 well separated areas in Costa Rica, Guyana and Ecuador P. superciliosus is 
the most abundant hermit hummingbird, although the plant species on which 
it feeds differ in each locality, with the possible exception of one Heliconia. 
In Guyana, as at Los Tayos, T. leucurus was rather sparse. The closely related 
T. ruckeri is also relatively sparse in the area of Costa Rica in which it was 
studied (Stiles 1975). Whatever the factors are which control relative 
abundance in P. superciliosus and species of Threnetes, they appear to operate 
over a wide geographical range and in forest habitats supporting almost 
entirely different plant species. 

Six plant groups (families or genera) together provide a high proportion 
of the nectar taken by hermit hummingbirds in the 3 places in South America 
where observations have been made (Table 4). Climatically the Kanaku 
mountains of Guyana differ from the 2 other areas in having a fairly severe 
dry season (during which most of the observations were made). Bromeliads 
were absent and the Passifloraceae, not recorded at the other 2 wetter areas, 
were important. 

Table 4 
Percentage use of 6 plant farrilies/genera by hermit hummingbirds for nectar feeding. 
Acanthaceae Bromeliaceae Heliconia Costus Centropogon Palicourea 

Trinidad 18 9 36 9 7 8 

Los Tayos 17 29 4 33 2 

Guyana 31 4 22 

Figures in parentheses below localities are total feeding records. In Los Tayos one flower 
probed was one record. In Trinidad and Guyana a record constituted a bout of feeding at 
a plant species. 

At Los Tayos, as elsewhere, many of the hermit-exploited flowers have 
evolved means of protecting their nectar from illegitimate exploitation by 
nectar thieves who do not perform pollination. Thus of the six Heliconia 
species at which hermits were feeding three, Heliconia aff. vellerigen, 35 and 
56, have approximately two-thirds of their corollas embedded in a thick, 
often hairy bract (Figs. 1, 3). Heliconia 57 has the corolla and thickened calyx 
entirely fused (Fig. 3b). The flowers of 2 species are unprotected; one of 
these, Heliconia 306, was seen to have the corolla pierced; no hummingbirds 
were seen taking nectar from the other, Heliconia 5 8. 

Three of the 5 bromeliads {Vriesea rubra, Aechmea aff. strobilacea and 
Gu^mania aff. melinonis) have approximately two-thirds or more of the 
corolla protected inside thick-walled bracts, with the flowers concentrated 
into compound inflorescences: Gu^mania sp. as a red elongated cone, Aechmea 
sp. as a large round bristling cone at ground level, and Vriesea rubra as a 
flattened branching inflorescence (Fig. 2). The flowers of the two Pitcairnia 

395 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

species are less well protected and many of the corollas of Pitcairnia 
aphelandriflora were found to be pierced just above the calyx (Fig. 2). The 
Costus species also has the base of its corolla embedded in a protective cone 

(Kg- 3)- 

As an hypothesis, I suggest that plant genera that have co-evolved with 
hermit hummingbirds in the direction of increased corolla length or specializ- 
ed corolla shapes, to match the hermit's increased beak length or curvature, and 
which also offer a fairly substantial nectar reward to make a visit to these 
often scattered plants worthwhile — that these plant genera have had to 
evolve protection for their nectar from short-billed hummingbirds that 
acquire flower-piercing habits (e.g. Heliothryx aurita) and from the flower- 
piercers Diglossa spp. Stiles (1979a) has already suggested this as an adaptation 
of heliconias that may deter nectar thieves. 

Only 2 of the bromeliads utilized by hermits at Los Tayos are epiphytic 
on trees: Vriesea rubra which grew at heights of 1-1.5 m, often on under- 
storey trees, and Gu^mania sp. which grew at heights of 1.5-iom. Such 
low-growing habits are probably also an adaptation for pollination by 
low-flying hermit hummingbirds. 

Gesneriaceae 237, an herbaceous plant 0.5-0.7 m high, presents its yellow 
flowers so that they are visible only to low-flying hummingbirds. It has a 
horizontal spread of leaves whose upper surface is green and under surface 
is red; the yellow flowers grow just below the red under surface of the leaves 
and are not visible from above. The use of red pigment in otherwise un- 
modified leaves as part of the attraction unit (setzsu Stiles 1980) in ornitho- 
philous flowers has been reported in other Gesneriaceae species (Jones & 
Rich 1972). 

Acknowledgements: I should like to thank the Los Tayos Expedition 1976 Trust for their 
logistic and financial support and the members of the joint Ecuadorean British expedition 
for their help in the field. I am also indebted to Dr. G. Argent and Dr. Lyman B. Smith 
for plant identifications and Dr. F. Gary Stiles and my husband Dr. D. W. Snow for 
helpful comments on the manuscript. 

References : 

Albuja, L. & De Vries, T. 1977. Aves colectadas y observadas alrededor de la cueva de los 

Tayos, Morana-Santiago, Ecuador. Rev. Univ. Catol. {Quito) 5 : 199-215. 
Colwell, R. K. 1973. Competition and coexistence in a simple tropical community. Am. 

Nat. 107: 737-760. 
Haffer, J. 1974. Avian speciation in tropical South America. Pub/. NuttalOrn. CI. 14. 
Jones, C. E. & Rich, P. V. 1972. Ornithophily and extra-oral color patters in Columnea 

florida Morton (Gesneriaceae). ifo/. Stb. Calif. Acad. Sci. 71:11 3-1 16. 
Lyon, D. M. 1976. A montane hummingbird territorial system in Oaxaca, Mexico. Wi/son 

Bull. 88:280-299. 
Snow, B. K. 1973. The behavior and ecology of hermit hummingbirds in the Kanaku 

Mountains, Guyana. WilsonBull. 86: 163-177. 

— 1977. Feeding behavior of two hummingbirds in a Costa Rican montane forest. 
WilsonBull. 89:613-615. 

Snow, B. K. & Snow, D. W. 1972. Feeding niches of hummingbirds in a Trinidad valley./. 

Anim.Ecol. 41 : 471-485. 
Stiles, F. G. 1975. Ecology, flowering phenology and hummingbird pollination of some 

Costa Rican Heliconia species. Ecology 56:285-310. 

— 1978. Temporal organization of flowering among the hummingbird foodplants of 
a tropical wet forest. Biotropica 10: 194-210. 

— 1979a. Notes on the natural history of Heliconia (Musaceae) in Costa Rica. Brenesia 
i5,supl.: 1 51-180. 

— 1979b. Ecological and evolutionary implications of bird pollination. Am. Zool. 18: 
7 I 5 r -727- 

— 1980. Ecological and evolutionary aspects of bird-flower coadaptations. Acta XVII 
Int. Orn. Congr. (in press). 

[Bull.B.O.C. ipSi: 101(4)] 396 

Styles, F. G. & Wolf, L. L. 1979. The ecology and evolution of lek mating behaviour in 

the Longtailed Hermit hummingbird. Am. Orn. Union Monogr. 27. 
Zimmer, J. T. 1950. Studies of Peruvian birds. No. 56. Am. Mus. Novit. 1450: 1-14. 

Address: Barbara K. Snow, Old Forge, Wingrave, Aylesbury, Bucks, England. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981. 

Present abundance of the Warsangli Linnet 
Acantbis johannis 
by J. S. Ash and J. E. Miskell 

Received 6 May 19 81 

It seems likely that the present-day status of the elusive Warsangli Linnet 
Acantbis johannis has changed considerably from what it was in the recent 
past. In May 1 979 we found it was one of the commonest small birds round 
Daloh (io° 45 'N, 47 1 5 'E) in the mountains of northern Somalia, that is in 
one of the 2 earlier collecting sites; and in May 1980 we saw others at 2 new 
sites, namely Moon(n° oi'N, 48 26'E) and Ragad(io° 59'N, 48 31'E), close 
to the second earlier collecting site near Musha Aled (1 1° oo'N, 48 19'E). 

Archer & Godman (1961) reviewed the existing paucity of knowledge 
about the species (see also Clark 191 9, Williams 1956), whose past occurrences 
and distribution can be summarised as follows:- "On the way up to Musha 
Aled" 1200 m, 8-9.ii.1919, flock of 25 seen, 1 6* collected on 9.U.1919; Daloh 
1800 m, 12-13.viii.195 5, small flock, 1 $ collected 1 3 . viii and 1 $ collected 
22.X.55; [Bokh (io° 36'N, 47 12'E) 1800 m, 1955, stated to occur]; and 
Tagair (io° 45 'N, 47 24'E) 1760 m, 27.vii.1957, 1 6* collected (USNM 

A. R. Tribe who lived at Daloh for some time, and collected all the later 
specimens, saw more of these linnets in the area on other occasions at 
1 800-2 1 00 m, and the specimen collected by him at Tagair suggests that 
there may be still other specimens unrecorded in the literature. Archer's 
collector was unable to find the birds in nearly 2 months search from March 
1919, and neither R. Meinertzhagen in about 1950 nor J. G. Williams in 
1954 could find it in the Warsangli country. We intended to look for the 
species on our journey in May 1979 from Erigavo (io° 38'N, 47 22 'E) to 
Mait (io° 5 8'N, 47 05 'E) through Daloh, but hardly expected to find it in 
the short time at our disposal, particularly in view of the infrequency of 
sightings in the 60 years since its discovery. 

As we approached the Rest House in the Daloh Forest Reserve on 17 May 
we stopped to watch, as it flew up into a tree, the first Somali Blackbird 
Turdus olivaceus ludoviciae we had seen. Close beside it was a Warsangli Linnet. 
Within the next hour or two we saw many more of the former, and at least 
1 5 of the linnets within 2 km of the Rest House. On the following morning 
we caught 19 linnets, all males, in 2 nets by small pools, and noted that the 
birds were very common. On 1 9 May at a brief halt in a gorge c. 5 km to the 
WNW we saw 10 more males, but failed to see any others on the steep 
descent to the coastal plain. The wing-lengths of the captured birds ranged 
from 70-80 mm, mean 75.2 (S.D. ±2.80) and the weights from 11. 8-1 5.0 g, 
mean 13.4 (S.D. ±0.78). 

Daloh is situated in degraded Juniper Juniperus procera forest, with some 
olives and other mixed trees and shrubs, where there were many open areas 

397 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

due to felling, damage by fire, and cattle-grazing. In places, however, there 
was a fairly dense under-storey, composed particularly of thickets of a 
shrubby species of Salvia. In spite of searching from dawn onwards, no 
linnets were seen on 1 8 May until 0730. Then suddenly they were everywhere, 
but all were males and no females were identified throughout our brief visit. 
We estimated that probably 100 males were seen within a radius of 2-3 km of 
the Rest House. The 19 captured in a few hours, of which none of the 15 
ringed was recaught, at only 2 of the many small pools in the area, supports 
our view that the species is fairly numerous. By 1300, all had disappeared and 
a wide search in mid-afternoon failed to trace any. 

Gonadal development in 4 males (testes 5-6 mm long) indicated that they 
were in or near breeding condition, and song was frequently heard and 
display seen, in spite of the absence of females. In fact, because of their 
apparent absence, we suspect that they may have been incubating eggs in an 
area at some distance from Daloh, but no clue was obtained as to where this 
might have been. Furthermore, the males usually occurred singly, which is 
again suggestive of breeding, for both Clarke (19 19) and Williams (1956) 
refer to flocks in February and August. A local forest-guard, who knew the 
birds well, and had worked for A. R. Tribe, claimed they nested in the 
hollows formed below branches on the trunks of Junipers, but this needs to 
be substantiated. 

Song and call notes. The song was a patternless series of Serinus-like. notes. 
The calls were variable, and were described as:- a Goldfinch Carduelis 
carduelis-like "tsee-wit", a Willow Warbler Phylloscopus trochilus-like. "tweek", 
a twittering "sis-sis-sis", and a clear "sweet-ee". Most of the song was in the 
early morning. 

Habits. Easily identified in flight as a small black and white bird with 
large white wing patches and a chestnut and whitish rump. They have a 
distinct preference for high exposed perches at the end of dead branches on 
trees, where, immediately on alighting, they strenuously wipe their bills. 
Unlike Tribe (Williams 1956) we did not find them very shy and alert, nor 
extremely difficult to approach. 

Food. One bird was watched feeding on low grass seeds, taken from the 
plant, but all others seen feeding were eating the green seeds of the Salvia 
from places where the flower-head had just been shed. This attachment to 
green seeds was borne out by the considerable amount of green discolour- 
ation round the bills of captured birds, and probably also accounted for the 
frequent bill- wiping. 

Display. One male on a branch approached another with bill raised in the 
air with fluttering (or trembling) wings extended downwards. Both soon 
flew off to engage in aerial pursuit and much bickering in which a third bird 
joined in. 

Associated species. No close association was noticed with any other species 
present. Characteristic birds of the same habitat included :- Somali Blackbird, 
very common (nests found with eggs and nestlings); Little Rock-Thrush 
Monticola rufocinerea, common; White-breasted White-eye Zosterops abyssinica 
socotrana, common; Ring-necked Dove Streptopelia capicola, fairly common; 
Red-eyed Dove S. semitorquata, fairly common; Olive Pigeon Columba 
arquatrix, common; Brown-rumped Seedeater Serinus tristriatus, very 
common; Red-fronted Tinkerbird Pogoniulus pusillus, common; Brown 
Woodland Warbler Phylloscopus umbrovirens, common; Paradise Flycatcher 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 398 

Tchitrea viridis, common; Somali Chestnut- winged Starling Onychognathus 
blythiiy common; Black-headed Bush-Shrike Tchagra senegala, fairly common; 
Richard's Pipit Anthus novae see iandiae, very common; Long-billed Pipit A. 
similis, fairly common; Grey-backed Camaroptera Camaroptera brevicaudata, 

In May 1980 our time in the mountains was even shorter. On 10 May we 
travelled south from Los Khoreh (1 1° 09 'N, 48 12'E) on the coast and spent 
the afternoon, night, and following morning at Musha Aled (1300 m). On 
11 May we travelled eastwards through Hawash Awal (n° oo'N, 48 19'E) 
to Moon 19 km away and Merce (1 1° oo'N, 48 24'E) at 27 km, thence to the 
end of the track at 3 1 km at Ragad. Three linnets were seen at Moon, and 
another at Ragad. We then returned to Hawash Awal and ascended the 
track for 9 km to camp at the highest point at 1 800 m. No other linnets were 
seen, and no clues obtained as to their breeding area. The bird seen at Ragad 
at midday came up from a sheer cliff face, but a careful search of several 
other cliffs the following day failed to reveal any more individuals. The area 
around Musha Aled and Ragad is devoid of Juniper forest, although it may 
well have been forested in the recent past. Towards Ragad there were a few 
small Junipers, and a few taller trees amongst the scrub, particularly Ficus sp. 
in the gulleys. 

Daloh is some 120 km west of Musha Aled and from local accounts we 
gathered that the intervening country consists of much suitable habitat for 
this escarpment-edge species, and similar habitat probably continues for at 
least a further 100 km eastwards. Thus we expect the range oiA.johannis may 
extend along 200-250 km of the Somalia highlands, but only over a very 
narrow strip a few kilometres wide between 1 200 and 2400 m. The present 
observations suggest its numbers may have increased in recent years and it is 
clearly no longer the "exceedingly rare bird" referred to by Archer & 
Godman. Forest destruction could be a contributory factor actually favouring 
the species, since it opens up denser stands of relatively close canopy forest. 
Much further investigation is needed to establish the whole distribution, 
status and breeding habitats of this linnet, but the known area is difficult of 
access and still virtually unknown ornithologically. 

We did not see any of these linnets in the mountains east of Bosaso 
(1 1° 17'N, 49 1 1 'E), but the mountains are very bare and arid, and apparently 
do not have any suitable habitat. To the west a road is under construction 
which will open up the rugged terrain east of Ragad, and will make areas of 
Juniper forest more easily accessible. 

Acknowledgements: We thank Mr. Ali Murshid for all his help on our visit to Daloh in 

References : 

Archer, G. & Godman, E. M. 1961. The Birds of British Somaliland and the Gulf of Aden. 

Gurney & Jackson : London. 
Clarke, S. R. 19 19. Description of a new genus Warsanglia and five new forms from 

Somaliland. Bull. Brit '. Orn. CI. 40: 48-50. 
Williams, J. G. 1956. The re-discovery of Warsangliajohannis. Ibis 98 : 531-532. 

Addresses: Dr. J. S. Ash, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution' 

Washington, D.C. 20560, U.S.A. 
J. E. Miskell, 1 1 Second Street, Geneseo, N.Y. 14454, U.S.A. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 198 1. 


399 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

A new race of the Scaly Babbler Turdoides squamulatus 

from Somalia 

by J. S. Ash 

Received 4 March 1981 

A babbler Turdoides sp. living in riverine scrub along the Webi (River) 
Shebelli in southern Somalia is very similar to other babblers seen upstream 
further to the north in Ethiopia. My identification of these birds in the field 
was uncertain, but the collection of specimens has shown that they belong 
to a distinct new subspecies of the Scaly Babbler Turdoides squamulatus (Fig. 1). 

I propose to name this distinctive race: 

Turdoides squamulatus carolinae subsp. nov. 
Diagnosis: a white-headed race except for darker crown and nape. 
Type: full-grown, collected at 7 km northeast of Afgoi (at 02 n'N, 45 ° 
io'E), southern Somalia, 1 1 December 1978, by J. S. Ash, collector's number 
214, USNM 571274. 

Measurement of type: wing 105, tail 100, bill from skull 22 mm. 
Distribution: riverine scrub at low altitude along the Webi Shebelli from Afgoi 
to Jiohar in Somalia and from Callafo to Imi in Ethiopia and probably along 
the intervening stretch of river. 

This bird is named for my daughter who saw it with me in Ethiopia and 
Somalia and drew the accompanying illustration from my specimens. 

In 1 97 1 I travelled along the Webi Shebelli with my wife and daughter, 
from 05 ° 25'N, 44 30'E near Mustahil, to Imi, and found this babbler at 
Callafo, at Imi and at a point between the 2 localities (see Appendix). At the 
time they were tentatively identified as White-headed Babblers Turdoides 
leucocephala because of the absence of pale rumps and their largely white 
heads. We did not know then that this area was far outside the range of 
distribution of this species. Unfortunately a captured bird was not collected, 
and the colour film on which it was photographed was lost in the post. 
However, I failed to see any sign of the species on further visits to the area 
in April 1974 and October/November 1975; but further south in Somalia 
similar babblers were found in the Afgoi- Jiohar area on the Shebelli, and 
specimens were collected (Table 1). 

Table i 
Details of Turdoides squamulatus collected in Somalia (in mm and g) 

Ref. Subspecies 






a T.s.jubaensis 

Gelib, Juba 





b T.s.jubaensis 

Gelib, Juba 




c T.s.jubaensis 

Fanole, Juba 





d T.s.jubaensis 

Fanole, Juba 





e 7 \s .carolinae 

Afgoi, Shebelli 





j T.s.carolinae 

Afgoi, Shebelli 




g* T.s carolhiae 

Callafo, Shebelli 




h T.s.iquamulatus 

40km S of Kolbio 





*not collected = Unsexed 

Turdoides squamulatus is one of a group of 12 species of Afrotropical 
babblers which have been divided into 2 distinct superspecies by Hall & 
Moreau (1970). These authors show that although they now have a continu- 
ous distribution, this must once have been very disrupted for so much 
speciation to have developed. The species T. squamulatus is distinguished 
from other species in the genus by a combination of characters which 

[BhII.B.O.C. i 981: 101(4)] 


Table 2 

Differences in head pattern between Turdoides squamulatus jubaensis {a in Table 1) and 

T.s. carolinae (e in Table 1). 




Blackish-grey with narrow 
ashy fringes 
Blackish-grey with narrow 



Black with broad ashy 

pale brown fringes 

fringes, interspersed with 
all white feathers 


Greyish brown with faint 

Similar, but admixed with 

paler fringes 

all white feathers 

Lores and ear coverts 

Blackish grey 


Above eyes 

As crown 


Sides of face 

As ear coverts 





Sides of neck 

Greyish brown with narrow 

White, admixed with a few 

white fringes 

feathers with brownish 
grey centres 

Fig. 1. Heads of Turdoides squamulatus. Fig. 2. Distribution of the three subspecies of 

From top to bottom : T. s. carolinae ; T. s. Turdoides squamulatus in Somalia and Ethiopia. 

jubaenis; T. s. squamulatus. A = squamulatus; B = jubaensis; C = carolinae. 

401 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

includes: absence both of clear white head (although this may not apply to 
the northern population of carolinae) and of white rump, presence of pale 
brown underwing coverts and a yellow eye. The nominate race is restricted 
to a very small range in dense coastal bush in Kenya from Lamu to Vanga 
(White 1962), extending up the Tana River to above Garsen (Britton 1980). 
It almost certainly occurs along the coast north of Lamu, for it is known 
now from southern Somalia (see Appendix). 

Isolated from the nominate race, to the north is T. s. jubaensis, distributed 
along the Juba River from Dolo to Mareri (see Appendix). This race is 
lighter and greyer above and has less dusky ear coverts. The details for my 
specimens from Somalia, and for the one handled in Ethiopia are given in 
Table 1. In the fresh skins examined the two May jubaensis (c and d) are very 
similar to the two October birds (a and b) collected only a few kilometres apart 
along the Juba, except that the whole of their upperparts below the head, 
including wings and tail is browner, brownish-olive as opposed to greyish- 
olive, although b is slightly browner than a. Similarly, on the upperparts, all 
feathers showing greyish colouration in a and b are browner in c and d. The 
most striking difference between carolinae from the Shebelli and jubaensis is 
the amount of white on the head. The December Afgoi bird (e) has upper- 
parts much the same colour as the October T.s. jubaensis from Gelib, but the 
February bird (/) is slightly browner than e . The same comments apply to 
the underparts, except that the Afgoi birds are slightly paler grey, and the 
brownish wash on the flanks is less extensive and somewhat greyer. However, 
it is in the head region that they differ mostly (Fig. 1 and Table 2). 

The second Afgoi bird (/) is essentially similar except that the forehead 
has one or two feathers, and the crown has more feathers, with black centres, 
and their pale fringes are narrower. As stated above, no specimens nor 
description exist for birds from Ethiopia, but my impression is that the latter 
were even whiter in the head region, so much so that they were thought to 
be T. leucocephala. T.s. squamulatus, which just reaches southern Somalia (Fig. 2), 
is a darker bird, without a white throat patch and with a blackish crown and 
ear coverts. 

A pair of carolinae was seen with nesting material on 20 October; the $ 
squamulatus had slightly advanced gonads (largest ovum 1.5 mm) on 24 

In the field, carolinae is mainly silent and unobtrusive, although occasionally 
a party call together loudly in typical babbler fashion and sometimes emerge 
from thick cover into the open. The Afgoi carolinae show a great deal of 
white on the head, unlike jubaensis whose heads, except for a white throat, 
look all dark (an exception was a bird on 2 October 1979 at Shongolo, which 
possessed several white feathers in the head region and therefore approached 
carolinae). squamulatus is darker still and any whiteness is reduced to a scaly 
pattern (Fig. 1). The absence of a white rump, in connection with a bright 
yellow eye, rules out any race of the White- rumped Babbler T.leucopjgius. 

In Ethiopia and Somalia no other species of Turdoides babbler occurs 
alongside T. squamulatus, but not far away to the west in the upper reaches of 
the Webi Gestro (06 59'N, 40 44'E) near Ghinnir, there is another species 
with uniform brown upperparts, brownish white underparts, pale ( Pyellow- 
ish brown) underwing coverts and a red eye, which needs to be collected and 

T. squamulatus therefore occurs in 3 races through eastern Kenya, southern 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 


Somalia and southeastern Ethiopia (Fig. 2), showing a discontinuous cline 
of decreasing white-headedness from north to south, thus paralleling the 
situation of T.leucopjgius in Ethiopia. Probably the most northerly T. 
squamulatus, in Ethiopia, which have even whiter heads, are isolated from 
those in Somalia, and may in due course require taxonomic separation. 
Along both the Shebelli and Juba rivers their riverine habitat is being 
destroyed at an alarming rate, and both races are inevitably threatened. 

Acknowledgements: I thank the following who helped in procuring and preparing speci- 
mens: C.P-J. Ash, Dr. R. L. Bruggers, Shamsa Omar Dahir, Omar Mohamed Hersi, Yussuf 
Ahmed Jimale, J. E. Miskell, A. A. Murshid and J. Mwaki; also Dr. G. E. Watson for much 
help in the examination of specimens, and my daughter Caroline for the drawing shown 
as Fig. 1 . 


Records of the 3 

races of Scaly Babbler Turdoides squamulatus in 

Ethiopia and Somalia. 






T.s. squamulatus 

<\ 30km S of Kolbio oi°22 / S, 

4i°23 , E 



Ash & Miskell 

40km S of Kolbio 


4 I°2 7 'E 


ip(i col] 

.) Ash & Miskell 




42 i8'E 

Van Someren 1929** 


oo°38 , N, 


Van Someren 1929 


o 3 ° 4 8'N, 

4 2°32 , E 

Van Someren 1932 

Dawa River 

o4°io , N, 

42°o6 , E 



Erlanger 1905 


o4°io , N, 




Erlanger 1905 



42°i7 , E 


Erlanger 1905 


f.oi°25 / N, 

42 25'E 


Erlanger 1905 



4 2°47'E 


Erlanger 1905 


o4°io / N, 




Salvadori 191 2 




Van Someren 193 1 


oo°25 / N, 




Haslam 1980 








oo°29 r N, 

4 2°47 / E 









Ash & Miskell 


oo° 47 'N, 

42*3 8 'E 



Ash & Miskell 


oi°24 , N ) 

42 27'E 



Ash & Miskell 


02°I2 , N, 

42°i5 , E 



Ash & Miskell 

(Far Sarei 


43°22 , E 


2 P 

Ash & Miskell)* 



42 38'E 


2 P 

Ash & Miskell 



42°35 , E 



Ash & Miskell 


oo°28 r N, 




Y. A. Jimale 



o 5 ° 3 6'N, 





Gode(n 7 kmW) 


42°35 / E 





o6°28 / N, 





Near Afgoi 


45°io , E 



Ash & Miskell 








02°23 / N, 











Note, p = party; pp = parties; * = heard only; VC = very common; o = sex unknown. 

♦♦The data in Van Someren's papers are rather confusing; according to the card index of 
his specimans in the possession of his son, Dr. G. R. Cunningham-van Someren, there 
were 7 specimens. These came from Hellesheid, Serenli and between Lugh and Serenli, in 
July 1922 and February 1923. 

403 [Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 

References : 

Britton, P. L. (ed.). 1980. Birds oj 'East Africa. EANHS : Nairobi. 

Erlanger, C. F. v. 1905. Beitragezur Vogelfauna Nordostafrikas./. Orn. 3:433-499. 

Hall, B. P. & Moreau, R. E. 1970. An Atlas of Speciation in African Passerine Birds. Trustees 

of the British Museum (Natural History) : London. 
Haslam, J. 1980. Birds recorded from Mareri, Somalia, in 1979, with additional notes from 

the coast. Duplicated report : pp. 1 3 . 
Salvadori, T. 191 2. Missione per la frontiera italo-etiopica sotto il commando del Capitano 

Carlo Citerni. Risultati Zoologici. Uccelli. Ann. Mus. Civ. Stor. Nat. 45 : 304-327. 
Van Someren, V. G. L. 1929, 193 1. Notes on the birds of Jubaland and the Northern 

Frontier. f.East Afr. <& Uganda Nat. Hist. Soc. Nos. 35,37. 
— 1932. Birds of Kenya and Uganda, being addenda and corrigenda to my previous 

paper in "Novitates Zoologicae", XXIX, 1922. Novit Zool. 37:25 1-380. 
White, C. M. N. 1962. A Revised Check List of African Shrikes . . .Babblers. Government 

Printer: Lusaka. 

Address: Dr. J. S. Ash, Division of Birds, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian 
Institution, Washington D.C. 20560, U.S.A. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1981 


Jennings, M. C. 1981. The Birds of Saudi Arabia: a Check-list. Pp. 1-112. The author, 
10 Mill Lane, Whittlesford, Cambridge, England. £6.30, post-free (£7.30 air mail). 

This is the first time that an attempt has been made to define the status and range of 
the 410-odd species recorded within the Kingdom. The breeding avifauna (some 150 
species) of Saudi Arabia belong predominantly with the Palaearctic Region but 
Afrotropical and Oriental elements are also represented. In addition, there are over 200 
species which occur only as passage migrants. There are 4 maps: the first illustrates 7 
suggested ornithological sub-divisions (referred to as "regions") of Saudi Arabia; the 
3 others show respectively localities mentioned in the text, mean annual rainfall and 
relief. Also worth mentioning are attractive line drawings by Dr. C. J. F. Coombs of 
the Quail and 3 species of bustard, and distribution maps of 117 of the breeding species. 
This work will be essential to any ornithologist resident in or visiting Saudi Arabia and 
doubtless useful to any student of the Arabian peninsula. The author is to be com- 
mended for his enterprise in sponsoring publication himself. 

Oberle, Philippe (Ed). 1981. Madagascar. Un Sanctuaire de la Nature. Pp. 118, 103 
illustrations in colour, 13 in black-and-white, 4 maps. Lechevalier S.A.R.L., 19 rue 
Augereau, Paris 7c Fr. 145 (including postage). 

Contains 8 chapters by well known specialists, the first by Recteur Paulian, and 
concludes with a useful bibliography. Many of the illustrations are outstanding and for 
these alone this volume should excite general interest in the cause of conservation in 
Madagascar, which, indeed, is a problem of outstanding importance in view of the 
remarkable degree of endemism there. The chapter on birds by C. W. Benson alone 
covers 4 endemic families, while the endemic genus Coua (in the Cuculidae), for example, 
has radiated into 10 species. In the list of species Benson was obliged to follow the 
nomenclature in the book by Milon et al. (1973) on the birds of Madagascar: hence 
Apus apus balstoni instead of A. barbatus balstoni and Pseudocossyphus inter inus instead of 
Monticola sharpei are used. Altogether a most commendable publication. 

Gotch, A. F. 198 1. Birds — Their Latin Names Explained. Pp. 1-348. Blandford Press: 
Poole, Dorset. £10.95. 

An elementary introduction to the nomenclature of birds (following the author's 
similar publication for mammals). The first 40 pages explain the rudiments of classifi- 
cation, while the rest of the book gives the derivations of the scientific names of some 
1850 species, chosen arbitrarily apparently as a cross-section of the world's 8600-odd 
species. The syllables of each generic name are usually straightforwardly translated, the 

[Bull.B.O.C. 1981: 101(4)] 404 

specific names, so often plain adjectives, more readily so. Where a proper name occurs 
in the scientific name, a very short biographical note of the individual is given. The 
author usually ventures reasons for particular names having been attached to particular 
species, some most intriguing, but perhaps sometimes with more journalistic imagination 
than that of the originator of the name. With each species is given its world distribution, 
but so briefly that it is frequently too misleading to have been worth including. A 
glossary of the translations of the Latin and Greek words used in the scientific names 
of the birds chosen would have been a useful addition. 

Long, J. L. 1981. Introduced Birds of the World. Pp. 1-528. 425 distribution maps, 215 line 
drawings. David and Charles: Newton Abbot, Devon. 

A nicely produced, heavy volume, well researched and attractively illustrated, with 
detailed maps and an extensive bibliography of 24 pages in small print, covering 425 
species introduced, successfully or otherwise, world wide. Each species has sections on 
distinguishing characteristics, native range and introduced distribution, 'notes on 
introductions', general habits and 'damage' (i.e. the adverse or other effects the introduc- 
tion may have had on the native avifauna). Each of the families has a detailed tabulated 
summary and there are other analytical tables. A scholarly and important reference 
work, with the unusual additional asset of 21 5 pleasing drawings by Susan Tingay. 

The Oman Flora and Fauna Survey 1977 (Dhofar). The Journal of Oman Studies. Special 
Report No. 2. Pp. 400, map, illustrated in colour and black-and-white. Office of the 
Government Adviser for Conservation of the Environment, Muscat, Oman. £20. 

A lavish book produced to a high standard, with some outstanding colour repro- 
ductions. Following a foreword from H.M. the Sultan Qaboos Bin Said of Oman there 
is a brief introduction by M. D. Gallagher, one of the 4 editors, of whom the others are 
S. N. Shaw Reade, J. B. Sale and R. H. Daly. There is coverage of the topography, 
ecology, vegetation, invertebrates and vertebrates of Dhofar and other parts of Oman. 
The section on birds by M. D. Gallagher and T. D. Rogers occupies 40 pages. The 
survey in autumn 1977 observed 188 bird species, of which 91 are discussed in the 
systematic list, which gives much new data on distribution and behaviour. 43 of the 91 
species have only recently been recorded in Oman, 10 of them (sight records) probably 
new to Arabia and 16 species have recently been proved to breed, at least one for the 
first time in Arabia. There is a rather general bibliography and a short gazetteer. Much 
valuable information appears to have been collected in Dhofar, but it is in danger of 
being obscured by the prestigious appearance of this attractive but expensive book. 

Millington, R. 1981. A Twitcher' s Diary. Pp. 1-92. Illustrated by the author. Blandford 
Press: Poole, Dorset. £8.95. 

The subtitle is 'The birdwatching year of Richard Millington' and it is just that. The 
text is a bare diary with field description, made more pleasurable by the author's own 
true to life drawings of his more spectacular sightings. There is a short but spirited 
defence of the convinced twitcher, the most dedicated of which genus have seen the 
incredible number of 300 species in the U.K. in a single year, though only a handful of 
them have passed this magic barrier, including the author with 303 in 1980. No-one will 
disagree with the author that a twitcher is a "bird-fanatic", one who "is prepared to 
travel extensively to try to see for himself [for whom else, indeed ?] as many different 
species as possible" ; but that he is always "a scientist, a sportsman and a conservationist" 
may be more contentious. It is clear that the great majority are as well-intentioned as 
most more ordinary birdwatchers, but, as always, there is a thoughtless minority who 
create adverse criticism in both brands of bird-lovers. It must also be fairly said that 
numerous twitchers have added considerably to the knowledge of field characters of the 
less common and rare "British" birds in the past 2 decades. 

■ :i-*#fc 
Papers, whether by Club Members or by non-members, should be sent to the 
Editor, Dr. J. F. Monk, The Glebe Cottage, Goring, Reading RG8 9AP, and 
are accepted on the understanding that they are offered solely for publication 
in the Bulletin. They should be typed on one side of the paper, with double- 
spacing and a wide margin, and submitted with a duplicate copy on airmail 

Scientific nomenclature and the style and lay-out of papers and of Refer- 
ences should conform with usage in this or recent issues of the Bulletin, unless 
a departure is explained and justified. Photographic illustrations, although 
welcome, can only be accepted if the contributor is willing to pay for their 

An author wishing to introduce a new name or describe a new form should 
append nom.,gen., sp. or subsp. nop., as appropriate, and set out the supporting 
evidence under the headings "Description", "Distribution", "Type", 
"Measurements of Type" and "Material examined", plus any others needed. 

A contributor is entitled to 10 free reprints of the pages of the Bulletin in 
which his contribution, if one page or more in length, appears. Additional 
reprints or reprints of contributions of less than one page may be ordered 
when the manuscript is submitted and will be charged for. Authors may be 
charged for proof corrections for which they are responsible. 

Available on application to Dr. D. W. Snow, British Museum (Natural 
History), Tring, Herts, as follows: 198 1 (Vol. 101) £3 each issue, 1980 
(Vol. 100) No. 1 £4. No. 2, 3 & 4 £2 each, 1973-1979 (Vols. 93-99) £2. 
each issue (4 per year), 1969-72 (Vols. 89-92) £1.50 each issue (6 per year), 
before 1969 £1.00 each issue (generally 9 per year); Indices: Vol. 70 and after 
£1 each, Vols. 50-69 £z each and Vol. 49 and before £4 each. Long runs 
(at least 10 years) for Vol. 5 o and after are available at reduced rates on enquiry, 
but higher price may otherwise be changed for numbers that are scarce or 
have been specially reprinted. Orders overs £50 are post free. 

Only Members of the British Ornithologists' Union are eligible to join the 
Club: applications should be sent to the Hon. Treasurer, Mrs. D. Bradley, 
53 Osterley Road, Isleworth, Middlesex, together with the current year's 
subscription. The remittance and all other payments to the Club should 
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should be sent to the Hon. Treasurer as promptly as possible. 


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Correspondence about Club meetings and other matters not mentioned 
above should go to the Hon. Secretary, R. E. F. Peal, 2 Chestnut Lane, 
Sevenoaks,KentTNi3 3AR. 

Published by the BRITISH ORNITHOLOGISTS' CLUB and printed by 
The Caxton and Holmesdale Press, 104 London Road Sevenoaks Kent. 




(Compiled by Mrs. D. M. Bradley and R. E. F. Peal) 

New Members 

Aspinwall, D. R., Box 50093, Lusaka, Zambia. 

Barton, Ms J.,, 16 Heswall Avenue, Clock Face, St. Helens, Merseyside WA9 4DR. 

Bokerman, W. C. A.,, Fundacao Parque Zoologica de Sao Paulo, Caixa Postal 12954, 
01000 Sao Paulo S.P., Brazil. 

Borras Hosta, A., Poeta Mistral 10, i°-3 Manresa, Barcelona, Spain. 

Boughton, R. C, Dippers Back, Ennerdale Bridge, Ennerdale, Cleator, Cumbria CA23 

Bryant, D. M., ph.d., Dept. of Biology, University of Stirling, Stirling FK9 4LA. 

Carter, A. G. T.,, UNICEF, P.O. Box 1358, Khartoum, Sudan. 

Clark, K. W. F., 136 Evans Road, Bloomfield, NJ 07003, U.S.A. 

Coldicott, N. P., Ibis Tours, 148 Gloucester Road North, Filton, Bristol, Avon. 

Coomber, R. F., 4 Staffa Cottages, Tobermory, Isle of Mull, Argyllshire PA75 6PL. 

Copley, S. C, 67 Porlock Avenue, Weeping Cross, Stafford ST17 oHT. 

Crocker, N. J., 1 Westfield Terrace, Longford, Gloucester GL2 9AZ. 

Downs, Dr. W. G., m.d., m.p.h., 10 Halstead Lane, Branford CT 06405, U.S.A. 

Dzubin, A., m.a., Conservation & Wildlife Service, 115 Perimeter Road, Saskatoon, 
Saskatchewan, Canada S7N 0X4. 

Fergenbauer, Frau A., dipl.biol., Hohemarkstr 33, D 6000, Frankfurt 101-50, West 

Galey, C. P., 162 Ramsey Road, St. Ives, Cambs. PE17 4QY. 

Gepp, A. R. M., Casilla Correo 6185, Montevideo, Uraguay. 

Gochfeld, Dr. M., m.d., Environmental & Community Medicine, Rutgers Medical School, 
Piscataway, NJ 08854, U.S.A. 

Goodman, S. M., 2007 Fishbeck Road, Howell, MI 48843, U.S.A. 

Hacking, Dr. C. N., m.b., b.s.,, 26 Brandling Place South, Jesmond, Newcastle-upon- 
Tyne NE2 4RU. 

Haffer, Dr. J., Tommesweg 60, 4300 Essen 1, West Germany. 

Hale, Prof. W. G., ph.d., 5 Ryder Close, Aughton, Ormskirk, Lanes. 

Hodgson, M. C, m.s., 3 Coval Road, London SW14 7RW. 

Hounsome, M. V., ph.d., Manchester University Museum, Oxford Road, Manchester 

Houston, D. C, d.phil., Dept. of Zoology, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ. 
: Howe, S.,, Alma House, 1 2 William Street, Torphins, Grampian AB3 4JR. 

Jackson, S. J., 1 The Green, Giggleswick, Settle, N. Yorks. BD240BL. 
I Jennings, P. P., c/o 1 Selbourne Court, Tavistock Close, Woodley Estate, Romsey, Hants. 
I Jensen, F. P., Hovmalvej 84-18, DK 2300, Sundby, Denmark. 

I; Johnson, Mrs. Hazel M., ph.d., Glenside, 1 1 Quarry Heads Lane, Durham City DHi 3DY. 
ji King, J., 96 Forbes Avenue, Potters Bar, Herts. EN6 5NQ. 

|| King, Warren B., b.a., 871 Dolley Madison Boulevard, McLean, VA 22101, U.S.A. 
I Lamothe, Ms Lorraine,, P.O. Box 1 34, Bulolo, Papua, New Guinea. 
I Langham, N. P. E., ph.d., School of Natural Resources, University of the South Pacific, 

P.O. Box 1 168, Suva, Fiji. 
I Lawn, M. R., 20 Croft Road, Godalming, Surrey GU7 iBY. 

Lovejoy, T. D., ph.d., World Wildlife Fund U.S., 1601 Connecticut Ave. N.W., 
Washington DC 20009, U.S.A. 

McLaughlin, T. J., Lisnacarrig, Brighton Road, Foxrock, Co. Dublin, Eire. 
I Madge, S. C, i Caudle Hill, Fairburn, Knottingley, W. Yorks. WFi 1 9JQ. 
I Meeth, P., Bramenlaan 5,2116 TR Bentveld, Netherlands. 

I Metcalfe, J. W. W., Four Corners, Church Lane, Barnwell, Peterborough PE8 5PG. 
i' Moreby, C,, 313 Streetsbrook Road, Solihull, W. Midlands B19 iRS. 

Nocedal, J., Monte Alban 377, Mexico 13, DF Mexico. 

O'Connor, R. J., d.phil., Beech Grove, Tring, Herts. HP23 5NR. 

Pomeroy, D. E., ph.d., Dept. of Zoology, Kenyatta University College, Box 43844, 

Nairobi, Kenya. 
Prendergast, Col. E. D. V., Manor House, Bagber, Sturminster Newton, Dorset DT10 

Prince, P. A., c/o British Antarctic Survey, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 oET. 
Rasmussen, S. H., Mollevej 6, Flong, DK2640, Hedhusene, Denmark. 
Redfern, C. P. F.,, Dept. of Molecular Biology, University of Edinburgh, King's 

Buildings, Mayfield Road, Edinburgh EH9 3 JR. 
Rozendaal, F. G., Prins Hendriklaan 58, 3721 AT Bilthoven, Netherlands. 
Saari, C. L. V., Aasla, SF 21 1 50 Roola, Finland. 
Smith, N. G., d.phil., S.T.R.I., APO Miami 34002, U.S.A. 
Somadikarta, Dr. S., Museum Zoologicum Bogoriense, Bogor, Indonesia. 
Spaans, Dr. Arie L., c/o Research Institute for Nature Management, Kemperbergerweg 67, 

6816 Arnhem, Netherlands. 
Stevens, J. P., Dept. of Animal & Poultry Science, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon 

S7N oWO, Canada. 
Stratford, R. T. J., 9 Beatrice Avenue, Keyham, Plymouth PL2 iNW. 
Stutterheim, C. J.,, Directorate of Nature Conservation, P/Bag 13306, Windhoek, 

Timmis, W. H., Harewood Bird Garden, Harewood, Leeds LE17 9LF, W. Yorks. 
Violani, Dr. C. G., Via S. Vittore 38/A, 20123 Milan, Italy. 
Watling, R. J.,, c/o National Westminster Bank Ltd., 64 High Street, Wallingford, 

Oxon OX 10 oST. 
Watson, G. L., ph.d., Ulpha Post Office, Broughton-in-Furness, Cumbria LA20 6DX. 


The Committee much regrets to report the death of the following Member :- 
Captain Collingwood Ingram. 


Goodall, Mrs. A. L.; Hagmann, Dr. J.; Lucey, R. G.; Pine, Dr. R. S., Smithers, Dr. 

Removed from Membership 

Beales, R. W.; Carins, M.; Collins, J.; Jacobsen, P. E.; Larsson, L.; Lawson, 
Dr. T. R. ; Lindsey, T. R. : Moller, A. P. ; Owre, Prof. O. T. 


Accounts, 1980 274 

Annual General Meeting 239,273 

Ash, J. S. 

Field description of the Obbia Lark Calandrella obbiensis, it's breeding and 
distribution ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 379-383 

A new race of the Scaly Babbler Turdoides squamulatus from Somalia ... ... 3 99-403 

Ash, J. S. & Colston, P. R. 

A House x Somali Sparrow Passer domesticus x P. castanopterus hybrid ... ... 29 1-294 

Ash, J. S. & Miskell, J. E. 

Present abundance of the Warsangli Linnet A canthisjohannis 396-398 

Baker, Allan J. 

See Richardson, Dorothy M. 

Benson, C. W. 

Ecological differences between the Grass Owl Tyto capensis and the Marsh Owl 

Asiocapensis ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 372-37^ 

Books Received ... 272,403-404 

Boswell, Jeffery & Dickson, Wendy 

Additions to a discography of bird sound from the Oriental zoogeographical 

region 313-318 

Bourne, W. R. P. & David, A. C. F. 

Nineteenth Century bird records from Tristan da Cunha ... ... ... 247-2 5 6 

Brooke, M. de L. 

An illustrated address on the breeding of Manx Shearwaters on Skokholm and 

Skomer 273 

Brooke, R. K. & Clancey, P. A. 

The authorship of the generic and specific names of the Bat Hawk ... ... 371-372 

Browne, P. W. P. 

Breeding of six Palaearctic birds in southwest Mauritania 306-3 10 

Bruun, Bertel, Mendelssohn, Heinrich & Bull, John 

A new subspecies of Lappet-faced Vulture Torgos tracheliotus from the Negev 
Desert, Israel 244-247 

Bull, John 
See Bruun 

Cardiff, S. W. & Remsen, J. V. Jr. 

Three bird species new to Bolivia 304-305 

Clancey, P. A. 
See Brooke 

Colston, P. R. 

A newly described species of Melignomon (Indicatoridae) from Liberia, West 


See also Ash 

Committee, Report of for 1980 ... 239 

Cowles, Graham S. 

The first evidence of Demoiselle Crane Anthropoides virgo and Pygmy 

Cormorant Pbalacrocorax pygmaeus in Britain ... ... ... ... ... 383-386 

Cramp, Stanley 

An address on ornithology and conservation in Europe 240 

Cunningham-Van Someren, G. R. 

On the Type-locality of Pogonocichla interna Sharpe, 1 90 1 ... ... ... 377-378 

Cunningham-Van Someren, G. R. & Schifter, Herbert 

New races of montane birds from Kenya and southern Sudan 347-354, 355-363 

David, A. C. F. 
See Bourne 

Dickerman, R. W. 

Preliminary review of the Clay-coloured Robin Turdusgrayiv/ith. redesignation 
of the type locality of the nominate form and description of a new 
subspecies ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 285-289 

Dickson, Wendy 
See Boswell 

Dowsett, R. J. 

Breeding and other observations on the Slaty Egret Egretta vinaceigula . . . 323-327 

Elgood, J. H. 

An illustrated address on the birds of Nigeria ... ... ... ... ... 313 

Finlayson, J. C. 

The morphology of Sardinian Warblers Sylvia melanocephala and Blackcaps 

S. atricapilla resident on Gibraltar ... ... ... ... ... ... 299-304 

Fisher, C. T. 

Specimens of extinct, endangered or rare birds in the Merseyside County 

Museums, Liverpool ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 276-285 

Fitter, R. S. R. 

A note on the birds oftheMaldive Islands 386-387 

Goodman, Steven M. & Houlihan, Patrick F. 

The Collared Turtle Dove Streptopelia decaocto in Egypt 334-363 

Graham, Gary L. 


Graves, Gary R. 

Brightly coloured plumage in female manakins (Pipra) 270-271 

Grimes, L. G. 
See Walsh 

Gubb, A. 

See Liversidge 

Hayman, Peter 

An illustrated address on seabirds, with special reference to in flight distinction 

of related species 355 

Houlihan, Patrick F. 
See Goodman 

Ingram, Collingwood 

What has been the cause of the present scarcity of song birds? 312 

Ingels, J. 

Notes on some Surinam birds 363-370 

James, Helen F. 
See Olson 

Kiff, Lloyd F. 

Notes on eggs of the Hook-billed Kite Chondrohierax uncinatus, including two 

overlooked nesting records ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 318-323 

Liversidge, R., Richardson, P. & Gubb, A. 

The Sooty Falcon Falco concohr in the southern Kalahari 268-270 

Louette, M. 

See Snow, D. W. 

Mann, C. F. 

An illustrated address on forest birds in Kenya 275 

Mead, C. J. 

An illustrated address on autumn birds in Texas 355 

Meister, Charles A. 
See Olson 

Mendelssohn, Heinrich 
See Bruun 

Miskell, J. E. 
See Ash 

Northcote, E. Marjorie 

Differences in weight and habit of Whooper Cygnus cygnm and Mute C. olor 

Swans in relation to differences in their longbones ... ... ... ... 266-267 

Olson, Storrs L., James, Helen F. & Meister, Charles A. 

Winter field notes and specimen weights of Cayman Island Birds 33 9-346 

O'Neill, John P. & Parker, Theodore A., Ill 

New subspecies of Pipreola riefferii and Chlorospingus ophthalmicus from Peru . . . 294-299 


Parker, Theodore A., Ill 

Distribution and biology of the White-checked Cotinga Zaratornis stresemanni, 

a high Andean frugivore 256-265 

See also O'Neill 

Parkes, Kenneth C. 

A substitute name for a Phillipine minivet (PmVrow/ttr) 370 

Remsen, J. V. Jr. 
See Cardiff 

Richardson, Dorothy M. & Baker, Allan J. 

Last record of the Cebu Island subspecies of the Orange-bellied Flower- 
pecker Dicaeum trigonostigma pallidius 275-276 

Richardson P. 

See Liversidge 

Schifter, Herbert 

See Cunningham- Van Sommeren 


A new subspecies of Anairetes agraphia (Tyrannidae) from northern Peru . . . 241-243 

Snow, Barbara K. 

Relationships between hermit hummingbirds and their food plants in eastern 

Ecuador 387-396 

Snow, D. W. & Louette M. 

Atlas of speciation in African Non-passerine Birds - Addenda and Corrigenda 2 336-339 

Turner, D. A. 

A note on Bensch's Rail Monias benscbi from Madagascar ... ... ... 240-24 1 

Walsh, J. Frank 

Rotating behaviour of the incubating Yellow-bellied Fruit Pigeon Treron 

waalia 311 

Walsh, J. Frank & Grimes, L. G. 

Observations on some Palearctic land birds in Ghana 327-334 


Holarctic and Nearctic sandpipers 31 1-3 12 

(Compiled by J. H. Elgood) 

All generic and specific names {of birds only) are indexed. Subspecific names are included in general 
only if new and are indexed in bold print under the generic and the specific names. Some subspecies of 

special interest are included. 



abyssinica, Alcippe 352-353 

— Coracias338 

— Zosterops 397 
Abyssinicus, Turdus 348-350, 363, 377 

— Turtuf337 
Acanthis johannis 396-398 
Accipiter nisus 336 

— ovampensis 337 
Acridotheres tristis 317, 387 
Acrocephalus arundinaceus 333 

— rufescens 333 

— schoenobaenus 328, 

— scirpaceus 328, 332 
Actitis hypoleucos 387 

— macularia 342 
acuminata, Calidris 311 
acunhae, Neospiza 247, 251, 
acutirostris, Heteralocha 284 
aedon, Troglodytes 282 
Aegotbeles savesi 281 
Aegypius 244 
Aegypius monachus 246 
aequatotialis, Apus 329 

— Sheppardia 3 5 3—354 
aequinoctialis, Procellar ia 253 
Aerodramus maximus 316 

— vanikorensis 316 
afer, Turtur 337 
affine, Malacopteron 316 
affinis, Apus 331 

- — Aythya 341 

— Caprimulgus 317 

— Hemignathus 283 
Agelaius xanthomus 284 
agilis, Anairetes 242-243 
Aglaeactis, cupripennis 258 
agraphia, Anairetes 241-243 
Alaemon alaudipes 306-309 

— hamertoni 383 
alaudipes, Alaemon 306-309 
alba, Egretta 340 

— Tyto 317, 343,375 
albatrus, Diomedea 277 
alberti, Crax 278 
albicilla, Haliaeetus 278 
albicollis, Turdus 365, 368 
albifacies, Sceloglaux 281 
albifrons, Pithys 368 

— Sterna 383 
albinucha, Columba 337 

albogularis, Francolinus 337 

albus, Porphyrio 279 

alcinus, Machaerhamphus 371-372 

— Macheiramphus 371-372 
Alcippe abyssinica 3 5 2-3 5 3 

Alcippe abyssinica loima subsp. nov. 353 

— — poliothorax subsp. nov. 353 
alcyon, Ceryle 343 

Alethe poliocephala 3 5 1-3 5 2 
Alethe poliocephala giloensis 

subsp. nov. 352 

— — nandensis subsp. nhv. 351 
alexandrinus, Charadrius 306-307 
Amaurornis phoenicurus 387 
Amazona brasiliensis 281 

— guildingii 281 

— imperialis 281 

— leucocephala 342 

— pretrei28i 

— vittata28i 
americana, Anas 341 

— Fulica 341 

— Grus 279 

— Parula 344 
americanus, Coccyzus 343 
Ammomanes cincturus 310 
Ampelion rubrocristata 258-260, 265 

— rufaxilla259 
Anairetes agilis 242-243 

— agraphia 242-243 
Anairetes agraphia plengei 

subsp. nov. 242 
Anairetes squamifera 242-243 
Anas americana 341 

— discors 341 

— smithii336 

— sparsa336 
Anastomus oscitans 317 
anatum, Falco 278 
andicola, Grallaria 258 
ani, Crotophaga 343 
Anodorhynchus glaucus 280 
Anorrhinus galeritus 316 
Anous stolidus 251,254 
Anser indicus 315, 317 
Anthornis melanura 283 
Anthracoceros coronatus 316 

— malabaricus 315, 317 
Anthreptes pallidigaster 283 

Anthropoides virgo 315, 383-384 
Anthus campestris 331 

— cervinus 331 

— melindae 383 

— novaeseelandiae 398 

— similis 398 
Anthus trivialis 331 
antigone, Grus 315, 317 
antisiensis, Cranioleuca 258 
apiaster, Merops 330 
apivorus, Pernis 387 
Aplonis fusca 284 

Apus aequatorialis 329 

— affinis 331 

— apus 328, 329 

— barbatus 338 

— melanotus 338 

— melba 329 

— niansae338 

— pallidus 328, 329, 338 

— sladeniae338 
apus, Apus 328, 329 
Aquila rapax 3 1 5 
aquila, Eutoxeres 388-395 
Aratinga 280 

— tricolor 280 
araea, Falco 278 
Arachnothera longirostris 317 
Aratinga guarouba 280 
arborea, Dendrocygna 278 
arcuata, Pipreola 296 
Ardeacinerea 387 

— herodias 340 

— purpurea 336 
Ardeola grayii 387 

— ibis 364 
ardesiaca, Egretta 323-326 
Arenaria interpres 342 
argentauris, Leiothrix 316 
argus, Argusianus 315, 316 
Argusianus argus 315, 316 
arquatrix, Columba 337, 397 
Artamus leucorhynchus 284 
arundinaceus, Acrocephalus 333 
Asacornis scutalata 278 
asiatica, Zenaida 342 
asiaticus, Caprimulgus 317 
Asiocapensis 338, 372-375 

— flammeus 373 

— hova 375 
assimilis, Puffinus 253,254 
Atelornis crossleyi 282 

— pittoides 282 
atlantica, Procellaria 2 5 3 
Atlapetes nationi 258 

— rufigensis 258 
atra, Pyriglena 282 
atrata, Carduelis 258 
atricapilla, Sylvia 299-304 
atrogularis, Orthotomus 316 

aucklandica, Coenocorypha 279 

— Nesonetta 278 
audounii, Larus 279 
aura, Cathartes 341 
auratus, Colaptes 343 
aureola, Pipra 270 

— Rhipidura 3 1 6 
auriceps, Cyanoramphus 281 
auricularis, Heterophasia 3 1 7 
aurita, Heliothrix 366, 368, 390, 395 

— Zenaida 342 
aurocapillus, Seiurus 345 
australe, Dicaeum 276 
australis, Treron 311 
Avocettula recurvirostris 369 
Aythya affinis 341 

— collaris 341 

bailleui, Loxioides 284 
bairdii, Calidris 312 

— Paroreomyza 284 
bakkamoena, Otus 317 
balaenarum, Sterna 279 
Balearica pavonina 337 
barbatus, Apus 338 
Batrachostomus cornutus 317 

— hodgsoni 317 

— javensis3i7 

— septimus 317 

— stellatus 317 
benghalensis, Rostratula 337 
bennettii, Campethera 339 
benschi, Monias 240-241 
bernieri, Oriolia 282 
bicalcaratus, Francolinus 337, 339 
bicolor, Tachycineta 343 
bicornis, Buceros 315 
bitorquatus, Rhinoptilus 279 
Bleda syndactyla 3 5 8-3 5 9 
Bleda syndactyla nandensis 

subsp. nt 
blythi, Tragopogon 278 
blythii, Onychognathus 398 
bollei, Columba 280 
borbonicus, Hypsipetes 282 
borealis, Dendrocopos 282 

— Numenius 279 
bourbonnensis, Terpsiphone 283 
bourcieri, Phaethornis 388-395 
bouvieri, Scotopelia 338 
braccatus, Moho 283 
Brachypteracias leptosomus 282 

— squamigera 282 
brachyurus, Ramphocinclus 282 
brasiliensis, Amazona 281 
brevicaudata, Camaroptera 398 
brevirostris, Pericrocotus 370 

— Pterodroma 249, 253 
Bubulcus ibis 364 
Buceros bicornis 315 

35 : 

Buceros rhinoceros 316, 317 
bulweri, Lobiophasis 278 
Buteo galapagoensis 278 

— rufinus 328 

— solitarius 278 
Butorides striatus 387 

— virescens 340 

Cabalus, modestus 279 
caboti, Tragopan 278 
Cacomantis merulinus 315 

— variolus3i6 
caerulea, Egretta 340 

— Polioptila 344 
caeruleocapilla, Pipra 270 
caerulescens, Dendroica 345 
cafer, Pycnonotus 317 
Calandrella obbicnsis 379-383 
Calidris acuminata 311 

— bairdii 312 

— mauri3i2 

— melanotus 311 

— minutila 342 

— pusillus 342 
Callaeas cinerea 284 

— wilsoni 284 
calvus, Geronticus 277 
Calyptura cristata 282 
Camaroptera brevicaudata 398 
Campephilus imperialis 282 

— principalis 282 
campestris, Anthus 331 
Campethera bennettii 339 

— nubica339 
Camptorhynchus labradorius 278 
Campy lopterus largipennis 367 

— villaviscencio 388 
canorus, Cuculus 329 

— Garulax 314-317 
Capella gallinago 342 
capensis, Asio 328, 372-375 

— Turnagra283 

— Tyto 338, 372-375 
capicola, Streptopelia 397 
Caprimulgus affinis 317 

— asiaticus3i7 

— climacurus 338 

— indicus 317 

— macrurus3i7 

— nigrescens 366, 367 

— pulchellus 317 

— rufigena338 
carbo, Phalacrocorax 385 
Carduelis atrata 258 

— carduelis 397 

— chloris 249 

— crassirostris 258 

— cucullata 284 

— uropygialis 258 
carduelis, Carduelis 397 

caribbaea, Pterodroma 277 
carolinae, Turdoides 399 
carolinensis, Conuropsis 280 

— Dumetella 343 
carunculatus, Creadion 284 

— Phalacrocorax 277 
caryophyllacea, Rhodonessa 278 
cassidix, Meliphaga 283 
cassini, Falco 278 
castanopterus, Passer 291-293 
Catharacta skua 254 
Cathartes aura 341 

Catreus wallichii 279, 315 
caudifasciatus, Tyrannus 343 
cayana, Dacnis 369 

— Tangara 369 
cayanensis, Leptodon 320, 322 
Centropus grillii 337 

— monachus337 

— senegalensis 337 
Cephalopterus penduliger 282 
cervinus, Anthus 331 
Ceryle alcyon 343 
Chalcophaps indica 387 
Chamaepetes goudotii 304-305 
Charadrius alexandrinus 306-307 

— pecuarius 383 

— semipalmatus 342 

— vociferus 341 

— wilsonia 342 
chathamensis, Hemiphaga 279 

— Oriolus3i7 

— Streptopelia 317 
chinensis, Coturnix 315 

— Oriolus 317 

— Streptopelia 317 
Chiroxiphia 271 
Chloephaga rubidiceps 277 
Chloriotis nigriceps 279 
chloris, Carduelis 249 

— Halcyon 317 
chloromeros, Pipra 270 
Chloropipo unicolor 271 
chloropus, Gallinula 341 
chlororhynchus, Diomedea 250, 253 
Chlorospingus opthalmicus 296-299 
Chlorospingus opthalmicus hiaticolus 

subsp. nov. 296 

— semifuscus 296-299 
Chondrohierax uncinatus 318-322 
chrysocome, Eudyptes 252 
Chrysogaster, Neophema 28 1 
Chrysuronia oenone 390, 393 
Cichlherminia lherminieri 282 
cincta, Notiomystis 283 
cincturus, Ammomanes 310 
cinerea, Ardea 387 

— Calleas 284 

— Procellaria 249, 253 
cinereus, Puffinus 253-254 

cinnamomeiventris, Myrmecocichla 331 

cinnamomina, Halcyon 282 

Circus macrourus 328 

Circus pygargus 328 

Cissopsis leveriana 369 

Cisticola eximia 332 

Claravis godefrida 280 

climacurus, Caprimulgus 338 

coccinea, Loxops 284 

Coccyzus americanus 343 

— minor 343 
Coeligena prunellei 281 
Coenocorypha aucklandica 279 

— heugeli 279 

— pusilla 279 
Coereba fla viola 345 
Colaptes auratus 343 
collaris, Aythya 341 
collybita, Phylloscopus 333 
Columba albinucha 337 

— arquatrix337, 397 

— bollei 280 

— junoniae 280 

— jouyi 280 

— leucocephala 342 

— trocaz 280 
columbarius, Falco 341 
Columbina passerina 342 
comeri, Gallinula 251 
concolor, Falco 268 
condamini, Eutoxeres 305, 388-395 
conirostris, Indicator 338 
Contopus virens 343 
Conuropsis carolinensis 280 
Copsychus malabaricus 315, 316, 317 

— luzoniensis 316 

— saularis 316, 317 

— sechellarum 282 
coqui, Francolinus 337 
Coracias abyssinica 338 
Coracina typica 282 
Coracopsis nigra 281 
Corapipo gutturalis 369 
cornutus, Batrachostomus 317 

— Eunymphicus 281 
coronata, Dendroica 345 

— Pipra 270 
coronatus, Anthracoceros 316 

— Vanellus 383 
corvina, Terpsiphone 283 
Corvusenca 316 

— macrorhynchus 317 

— ruficollis3io 

— splendens3i7 

— tropicus 284 
Cossypha cyanocampter 355-356 
Cossypha cyanocampter pallidri ventris 

subsp. nov. 356 
Cotinga maculata 282 
Coturnix chinensis 315 

Coturnix novaezelandiae 278 
Coua delalandei 281 
Cranioleuca antisiensis 258 
crassirostris, Carduelis 258 

— Vanellus 337 

— Vireo 344 
Crax alberti 278 

— pinima 278 
Creadion carunculatus 284 
cristata, Calyptura 282 

— Lophotibis 277 
cristatus, Pavo 315,317 

— Podiceps336 
crossleyi, Atelornis 282 
Crossoptilon crossoptilon 278 

— mantchuricum 315 
crossoptilon, Crossoptilon 278 
Crotophaga ani 343 
cruentata, Pyrrhura 280 
Crypturellus soui 363, 365 
cucullata, Carduelis 284 
cucullatus, Raphus 279 
Cuculus canorus 329 

— micropterus 387 
cupido, Tympanuchus 278 
cupripennis, Aglaeactis 258 
cursor, Cursorius 306-308, 383 
Cursorius cursor 306-308, 383 
cyanea, Passerina 346 
Cyanerpes cyaneus 369 
cyaneus, Cyanerpes 369 
cyanocampter, Cossypha 3 5 5-3 5 6 
Cyanoramphus auriceps 281 

— malherbi28i 

— novaezelaniae 281 

— zealandicus 281 
Cygnus cygnus 266 

— olor 266 
cygnus, Cygnus 266 

Dacnis cayana 369 

dauma, Zoothera 239 

daurica, Hirundo 317 

decaocto, Streptopelia 334-335 

decipiens, Streptopelia 337 

decurtata, Fachysylvia (=Hylophilus) 286 

delalandei, Coua 281 

Delichon urbica 330 

demersus, Speniscus 277 

Dendrocitta formosae 315 

Dendrocopos borealis 282 

Dendrocygna arborea 278 

Dendroica caerulescens 345 

— coronata 345 

— discolor 345 

— dominica 344 

— palmarum 345 

— petechia 344 

— tigrina 344 

— vitellina 345 

Dendropicos elliotii 338, 339 

— goertae339 

— poecilolaemus 339 

— pyr rhogaster 339 
derbianus, Oreophasis 278 
Dicaeum 259 

— australe 276 

— pallidius 275-276 

— trigonostigma 275-276 
Dicrurus macrocercus 315 
Didunculus strigirostris 280 
Diglossaspp. 395 
Diomedea albatrus 277 

— chlororhynchos 250, 25 3 

— exulans 247, 250,252 
■ — melanophrys 250 

discolor, Dendroica 345 
discors, Anas 341 
dohrnii, Ramphodon 281 
dolei, Palmeria 283 
Doliornis sclateri 265 
domesticus, Passer 291-293 
dominica, Dendroica 344 

— Oxyura 341 
Doryfera johannae 388 
Drepanoptila holosericea 279 
Drepanorhynchus reichenowi 377 
Dryocopus javensis 282 
dubius, Hieraaetus 337 

Ducula goliath 279 

— whartoni 279 
Dumetella carolinensis 343 
duvaucelli, Harpactes 316 

Ectopistes migratoria 280 
Egretta alba 340 

— ardesiaca 323-326 

— caerulea 340 

— ibis 340 

— thula 340 

— tricolor 340 

— vinaceigula 323-326 
eisentrauti, Melignomon 290-29 1 
Elaenia 341 

Eleania martinica 343 
Elanoides forficatus 320, 321 
Elanus leucurus 320, 322 
elegans, Otus 317 
ellioti, Syrmaticus 279 
elliotii, Dendropicos 338, 339 
emphanum, Polyplectron 279 
enca, Corvus 316 
episcopus, Thraupis 369 
eremita, Geronticus 277 

— Nesocichla 247, 254 
Eremopteryx nigriceps 383 
erythronotus, Myrmotherula 282 
erythrophthalma, Netta 336 
erythroptera, Stachyris 316 
Eudynamis scolopacea 316, 317, 387 

Eudyptes chrysocome 2 5 2 
Eunymphicus cornutus 281 
eupatria, Psittacula 281 
Euphonia 259 
Eurostopodus macrotis 317 

— temminckii 316, 317 
Eutoxeres aquila 388-395 

— condamini 305, 388-395 
excubitor, Lanius 306-309 
exilis, Ixobrychus 340 
eximia, Cisticola 332 

exulans, Diomedea 247, 250, 252 

falcinellus, Plegadis 341 
Falco anatum 278 

— araea 278 

— cassini 278 

— columbarius 341 

— concolor 268-269 

— peregrinus 278 

— punctatus 278 

— sparverius 341 

— subbuteo 268-269, 3 28 > 3 2 l 
fasciicauda, Pipra 270 
filicauda, Pipra 270 

flammea, Paroreomyza 284 
flammeus, Asio 373 

— Pericrocotus 370 
flava, Motacilla 331 

— Piranga 369 
flaveola, Coereba 345 
flavicans, Foudia 284 
flavipes, Tringa 311, 342 
flavirostris, Limnocorax 374 
Fluvicola pica 368 
forficatus, Elanoides 320, 321 
formosae, Dendrocitta 315 
Forpus passerinus 367 
Foudia flavicans 284 

— sechellarum 284 
Francolinus albogularis 337 

— bicalcaratus 337, 339 

— coqui337 

— pondicerianus 317 
fraseri, Oreomanes 258 
Fregata magnificens 340 
Fregetta malanoleuca 249 

— tropica 249 
fregetta, Thalassidroma 254 
Fulica americana 341 
fulvus, Gyps 246 

furcata, Thalurania 367, 390, 393 
fusca, Aplonis 284 

— Phoebetria 253 
fuscatus, Margarops 363 

— Turdus 348-349 

galapagoensis, Buteo 278 
Galerida theklae 383 
galeritus, Anorrhinus 316 


Gallicolumba rubescens 280 
gallinago, Capella 342 
Gallinula chloropus 341 

— comeriiji 

— nesiotis 247, 254 
Gallusgallus 314, 317, 387 
gallus, Gallus 314, 317, 387 
Garulax canorus 314, 316, 317 

— leucolophus 315 

— mitfatus3i6 
Geopsittacus occidentalis 281 
Geothlypis trichas 345 
Geotrygon montana 364 
Geronticus calvus 277 

— eremita 277 
Gerygone igata 283 
giganteus, Macronectes 253 
giloensis, Alethe 3 5 2 
glacialoides, Procellaria 254 
Glaucis hirsuta 393, 394 
glaucus, Anodorhynchus 280 
godefrida, Clara vis 280 
goertae, Dendropicos 339 
goliath, Ducula 279 
goudotii, Chamaepetes 304-305 
goughensis, Rowettia 251 
Gracula religiosa 314,315,316 
Gr allar ia andicola 258 

— guatimalensis 305 
gravis, Puffinus 253 
grayi, Turdus 285-289 
grayii, Ardeola 387 
grillii, Centropus 337 
Grus americana 279 

— antigone 314, 315,317 

— leucogeranus 316 

— monacha 3 1 5 
guarouba, Aratinga 280 
guatimalensis, Grallaria 305 
guianensis, Morphnus 278 
guildingii, Amazona 281 
gularis, Macronus 316 
gurneyi, Pitta 282 
gutturalis, Corapipo 369 
gymnocephalus, Picathartes 283 
Gyps fulvus 246 

habroptilus, Strigops 280 
Haematopus ostralegus 279 
Halcyon chloris 317 

— cinnamomina 282 

— smyrnensis 317 
Haliaeetus albicilla 278 

— leucogaster 3 1 4, 3 1 5 
haliaetus, Pandion 341 
halli, Macronectes 253 
hamertoni, Alaemon 383 
hanapepe, Hemignathus 283 
Harpactes duvaucelli 316 
Harpia harpyja 278 

harpyja, Harpia 278 

harrisi, Nannopterum 277 

hasitata, Procellaria 254 

Heliochera 265 

Heliothrix aurita 366, 368, 390, 395 

Helmitheros vermivorus 344 

Hemignathus affinis 283 

— hanapepe 283 

— lucidus 283 

— obscurus 283 

— procerus 283 

— wilsoni 283 
Hemiphaga novaeseelandiae 279 

— chithamensis 279 
henrici, Megalaima 316 
herodias, Ardea 340 
Heteralocha acutirostris 284 
Heterophasia auricularis 317 
heudei, Paradoxornis 283 
heugeli, Coenocorypha 279 
hiaticolus, Chlorospingus 296-299 
Hieraaetus dubius 337 

— pennatus 328 
Hierophasis swinhoii 278 
Himantopus himantopus 279 

— knudseni 279 

— mexicanus 342 

— novaezelandiae 279 
Hippolais pallida 310 

— polyglotta328, 333 
hirsuta, Glaucis 393, 394 
hirtensis, Troglodytes 282 
Hirundo daurica 317 

— rustica 330, 343, 387 
hodgsoni, Batrachostomus 317 
holosericea, Drepanoptila 279 
hova, Asio 375 
hypermetra, Mirafra 383 
Hyphanornis 251 
hypoleucos, Actitis 387 
Hypophilus decurtata 286 
hypopyrrha, Streptopelia 337 
hypostictus, Taphrospilus 388 
hypoxanthus, Neodrepanis 282 
Hypsipetes borbonicus 282 

— madagascariensis 317 

— olivaceus 282 

iagoensis, Passer 292 
Ibis leucocephalus 317 
ibis, Ardeola 364 

— Bubulcus 364 

— Egretta 340 
Icteria virens 345 

Ictinia mississippiensis 320 
igata, Gerygone 283 
impennis, Pinguinus 279 
imperial is, Amazona 281 

— Campephilus 282 
incerta, Pterodroma 253 


indica, Chalcophaps 387 
Indicator conirostris 338 

— minor 338 
indicus, Anser 315,317 

— Caprimulgus 317 

— Vanellus3i7 
insularis, Otus 281 

intensa, Pogonocichla 377-378 
intermedia, Pipreola 296 
interpres, Arenaria 342 
Irenapuella 317 
isidorei, Pipra 270 
Ixobrychus exilis 340 

jacutinga, Pipile 278 
jamaicensis, Leptoptila 342 
javensis, Batrachostomus 317 

— Dryocopus 282 
jefferyi, Pithecophaga 278 
jocosus, Pycnonotus 317 
johannae, Doryfera 388 
johannis, Acanthis 396-398 
johnstoni, Merula 377 
jouyi, Columba 280 
jubaensis, Turdoides 399-402 
jubatus, Rhynochetos 279 
junoniae, Columba 280 

kakamegoes, Necooccyphus 357 
Ketupa zeylonensis 317 
kilgoris, Spermophaga 361 
kona, Loxioides 284 
knudseni, Himantopus 279 
krameri, Psittacula 3 1 7 

labradorius, Camptrohynchus 278 
Lanius excubitor 306-309 
lanyoni, Turdus 287 
laperouse, Megapodius 278 
largipennis, Campylopterus 367 
Larus audouinii 279 
leguati, Necropsar 284 
Leiothrix argentauris 316 
Leptasthenura pileata 258 

— yanacensis 258 
Leptodon cayanensis 320, 322 
leptosomus, Brachypterasias 282 
Leptotila jamaicensis 342 

— rufaxilla 364 

— verreauxi 364 
leucocephala, Amazona 342 

— Columba 342 

— Turdoides 399, 400 
leucocephalus, Ibis 317 
leucogaster, Haliaeetus 314, 315 

— Sula 340 
leucogenys, Pycnonotus 3 1 7 
leucogeranus, Grus 316 
leucolophus, Gracula 315 
Leucopeza semperi 283 

leucophrys, Ochthoeca 258 
leucoptera, Pterodroma 277 
Leucopternis polionota 278 
leucopterus, Platysmurus 316 
leucopygius, Turdoides 401, 402 
leucorhynchus, Artamus 284 
leucorodia, Platalea 317 
leucurus, Elanus 320, 322 

— Threnetes 388-395 
leveriana, Cissopis 369 
lherminieri, Cichlherminia 282 
Limnocorax flavirostris 374 
Lobiophasis bulweri 278 
Locustella lusciniodes 332 
loima, Alcippe 353 
longipes, Xenicus 282 
longirostris, Arachnothera 317 
longuemareus, Phaethornis 388-395 
Lophiophasis bulweri 278 
Lophotibis cristata 277 
Loxioides bailleui 284 

— kona 284 

— palmeri 284 
Loxops coccinea 284 

— ochracea 284 

— rufa 284 
lucidus, Hemignathus 283 
ludovicianus, Pheuticus 346 
lugubris, Surniculus 316 
Luscinia svecica 328, 331 
luscinioides, Locustella 332 
luteus, Passer 309 
luzoniensis Copsychus 316 
lyalli, Xenicus 282 

Machaerhamphus alcinus 371-372 
Macheiramphus alcinus 371-372 
Macrocephalon maleo 278 
macrocercus, Dicrurus 315 
Macronectes 247, 249, 253 

— giganteus253 

— halli 253 
Macronous gularis 316 
macroptera, Pterodroma 253 
macropterus, Vanellus 279 
macrorhynchus, Corvus 317 
macrotis, Eurostopodus 317 
macrourus, Circus 328 
macrurus, Caprimulgus 317 
macularia, Actitis 342 
maculata, Cotinga 282 

— Paroreomyza 284 

— Stachyris3i6 
madagascariensis, Hypsipetes 317 
maderaspatensis, Motacilla 317 
magellanicus, Scytalopus 258 
magicus, Otus 317 

magister, Vireo 344 
magnificens, Fregata 340 
magnum, Malacopteron 316 

malabaricus, Anthraceceros 315,317 

— Copsychus 315 
malacensis, Polyplectron 316 
Malacopteron affine 316 

— magnum 316 
maleo, Macrocephalon 278 
malherbi, Cyanoramphus 281 
Manacus 271 
manadensis, Otus 317 
mantananensis, Otus 317 
mantchuricum, Crossoptilon 315 
mareensis, Turdus 283 
Margarops fuscatus 363 
marina, Pelagodroma 254 
martinica, Elaenia 343 

— Porphyrula 341 
mauri, Calidris 312 
maximus, Aerodramus 316 

— Thalasseus 342 
mayeri, Nesoenas 280 
Megalaima henr ici 316 

— mystacophanos 3 1 7 

— oorti3i7 

— rafflesi3i6 

— zeylanica3i6 
megalotis, Otus 317 
Megapodius laperouse 278 
Melanerpes superciliaris 343 
melanocephala, Sylvia 299-304 
melanocephalus, Tragopan 278 
melanoleuca, Fregetta 249 

— Tringa 342 
melanonotus, Touit 280 
melanophrys, Diomedea 250 
melanotos, Calidris 3 1 1-3 1 2 
melanotus, Apus 338 
melanura, Anthornis 283 
melba, Apus 329 
Melignomon 289 

— eisentrauti 290-291 

— zenkeri 290-291 
melindae, Anthus 381, 383 
Meliphaga cassidix 283 
Melopyrrha nigra 346 
mendozae, Pomarea 283 
menstruus, Pionus 367 
mentalis, Pipra 270 
mentawi, Otus 317 
Mergus octosetaceus 278 
Merops apiaster 330 

— viridis 317 
Merula johnstoni 377 
merulinus, Cacomantis 315 
Mesoenas unicolor 279 
mesoleucus, Troglodytes 282 
Metallura phoebe 258 
Metabolus rugensis 283 
mexicanus, Himantopus 342 
meyeri, Poicephalus 337 
micropterus, Cuculus 387 

migrans, Milvus 317 
migratoria, Ectopistes 280 
Milvus migrans 317 
Mimus polyglottos 343 
minor, Coccyzus 343 

— Indicator 338 
minutilla, Calidris 342 
Mirafra hypermetra 383 

— somalica 383 
mississippiensis, Ictinia 320 
mitratus, Garulax 316 
Mnioptila varia 344 
mocino, Pharomachrus 281 
modes tus, Cabalus 279 
Moho braccatus 283 

— nobilis 283 
mollis, Procellaria 253 
monacha, Grus 315 
monachus, Aegypius 246 

— Centropus 337 
Monias benschi 240-241 
montana, Geotrygon 364 

— Paroeomyza 284 
montanus, Passer 293 
Monticola rufocinerea 397 

— saxatilis 331 

— solitatius 331 
Morphnus guianensis 278 
Motacilla flava 331 

— maderaspatensis 317 
mwaki, Turdus 349-350 
Myiarchus sagrae 343 
Myrmecocichla cinnamomeiventris 331 
Myrmotherula erythronotus 282 
mystacophanos, Megalaima 317 

nandensis, Alethe 3 5 1-3 5 2 

— Bleda358 

— Phyllastrephus 360 
Nannopterum harrisi 277 
nationi, Atlapetes 258 
naumanni, Turdus 363 
Necropsar leguati 284 
Nectarinia reichenowi 377 
negevensis, Torgos 245 
neglectus, Pericrocotus 370 
Neocossyphus poensis 357-358 
Neocossyphus poensis kakamegoes 

subsp. nov. 357 

— — nigridorsalis subsp. nov. 358 
Neodrepanis hypoxanthus 282 
Neophema chrysogaster 281 

— pulchella28i 

— splendida28i 
nesiotis, Gallinula 247, 254 
Nesochen sandvicensis 277 
Nesocichla eremita 247, 254 
Nesoclopeus poeciloptera 279 
Nesoenas mayeri 280 
Nesomimus trifasciatus 282 

Nesonetta aucklandica 278 
Nesospiza acunhae 247, 251,254 
Nestor productus 280 
Netta erythrophthalma 336 
ngurumanensis, Phyllastrephus 360 
niansae, Apus 338 
niger, Quiscalus 345 
nigra, Coracopsis 281 

— Melopyrrha 346 
nigrescens, Caprimulgus 366, 367 
nigriceps, Chloriotis 279 

— Eremopterix 383 
nigricollis, Stachyris 316 

- — Turnix 375 
nigridorsalis, Neocossyphus 358 
nigroluteus, Pericrocotus 370 
nilotica, Sterna 306-308 
Ninox novaeseelandiae 281 
Nipponia nippon 277 
nippon, Nipponia 277 
nisus, Accipiter 336 
nobilis, Moho 283 
Notiomystis cincta 283 
novaeseelandiae, Anthus 398 

— Hemiphaga 279 

— Ninox 281 

— Thinornis 279 
novaezelandiae, Coturnix 278 

— Cyanoramphus 281 

— Himantopus 279 
noveboracensis, Seiurus 345 
nubica, Campethera 339 
nubicus, Vultur 244 
Numenius borealis 279 

— phaeopus 342, 387 
Nyctanassa violacea 340 

obbiensis, Calandrella 379-383 
obscurus, Hemignathus 283 
occidentalis, Geopsittacus 281 
ochracea, Loxops 284 
Ochthoeca leucophrys 2 5 8 

— oenanthoides 258 

— rufipectoralis 258 
octosetaceus, Mergus 278 
Odontriorchis palliatus 322 
oenanthoides, Ochthoeca 258 
oenone, Chrysuronia 390, 393 
olivacea, Tiaris 346 
olivaceus, Hypsipetes 282 

— Turdus 396 
Onychognathus blythii 398 
oorti, Megalaima 317 
Ophrysia supersiliosa 278 
ophthalmus, Chlorospingus 294-299 
Oriolia bernieri 282 

Oriolus chinensis 317 

— xanthonotus 316 

— xanthornus 316 
Oreomanes fraseri 258 

Oreophasis derbianus 278 
Orthotomus atrogularis 316 

— sericeus 316 

— sutorius 317 
oscitans, Anastomus 317 
ostralegus, Haematopus 279 
Otus bakkamoena 317 

— elegans 317 

— insularis28i 

— magicus 317 

— manadensis 317 

— mantananensis 317 

— megalotis 317 

— mentawi 317 

— rufescens 317 

— silvicola3i7 

— spilocephalus 317 

— sunia 317 

— umbra 317 
ovampensis, Accipiter 337 
Oxyura dominica 341 

Pachyptila vittata 249, 253 
pachyrhynchia, Rhynchopsitta 280 
Pachysylvia decurtata 286 
pacificus, Pareudiastes 279 
palliatus, Odontriorchis 322 
pallida, Hippolais 310 
pallidiflava, Pogonocichla 350-351 
pallidigaster, Anthreptes 283 
pallidigularis, Sheppardia 354 
pallidius, Dicaeum 275-276 
pallidiventris, Cossypha 355 
pallidus, Apus 328, 329, 338 
palmarum, Dendroica 345 

— Thraupis 369 
palmeri, Loxioides 284 

— Phaeornis 282 

— Porzanula 279 
Palmer ia dolei 283 
palustris, Quiscalus 284 
Pandion haliaetus 341 
paradisi, Terpsiphone 316 
Paradoxornis heudei 283 
Pareudiastes pacificus 279 
parina, Xenodacnis 258 
parkinsoni, Procellaria 277 
Paroreomyza bairdii 284 

— flammea 284 

— maculata 284 

— montana 284 
Parula americana 344 
Passer castanopterus 291-293 

— domesticus 291-293 

— iagoensis 292 

— luteus 309 

— montanus 293 

— simplex 306-309 
Passerculus sandwichensis 346 
passerina, Columbina 342 

Passerina cyanea 346 
passerinus, Forpus 367 
Pavo cristatus 315,317 
pavonina, Balearica 337 
pecuarius, Charadrius 383 
Pelagodroma marina 254 
Pelecanoides urinatrix 254 
peli, Scotopelia 338 
pella, Topaza 367 
penduligera, Cephalopterus 282 
pennatus, Hieraaetus 328 
peregrinus, Falco 278 
Pericrocotus brevirostris 370 

— flammeus 370 
Pericrocotus flammeus nigroluteus 

new name {nomen novum) 370 
Pericrocotus neglectus 370 
Pernis apivorus 387 
persa, Tauraco 337 
peruviana, Vini 280 
petechia, Dendroica 344 
Petroica traversi 283 
Pezoporus flaviventris 281 

— wallicus28i 
phaeopus, Numenius 342, 387 
Phaeornis palmer i 282 
Phaenicophaeus pyrrhocephalus 281 
Phaethornis bourcieri 388-395 

— longuemareus 388-395 

— ruber 394 

— superciliosus 388-395 
Phalacrocorax carbo 385 

— carunculatus 277 

— pygmaeus 383-385 
Pharomachrus mocino 281 
Pheuticus ludovicianus 346 
phoebe, Metallura 258 
Phoebetria fusca 253 
phoenicurus, Amaurornis 387 
Phyllastrephus cabanisi 3 5 9 

— fisheri 359 

— placidus 359-361 
Phyllastrephus placidus nandensis 

subsp. nov. 360 

— — ngurumanensis 

subsp. nov. 360 
Phylloscopus collybita 333 

— sibilatrix 328, 333 

— trochilus 328, 333, 397 

— umbrovirens 397 
Phytotoma 265 

pica, Fluvicola 368 
Picathartes gymnocephalus 283 
Picoides (see Dendrocopos) 282 
picturata, Streptopelia 280 
pileata, Leptasthenura 258 
Pinguinus impennis 279 
pinima, Crax 278 
Pionus menstruus 367 
Pipile jacutinga 278 

Pipra 270-271 

— aureola 270 

— caeruleocapilla 270 

— chloromeros 270 

— coronata 270 

— erythrocephala 270 

— fasciicauda 270 

— filicauda 270 

— isidorei 270 

— mentalis 270 

— pipra 270 

— rubrocapilla 270 
pipra, Pipra 270 
Pipreola arcuata 296 

— intermedia 295 

— pulchra 296 

— riefferii 294-296, 299 
Pipreola riefferii tallmanorum 

subsp. nov. 294 
Pirangaflava 369 
Pithecophaga jefferyi 278 
Pithys albifrons 368 
Pitta gurneyi 282 
pittoides, Atelornis 282 
placidus, Phyllastrephus 359-361 
Platalea leucorodia 317 
Platysmurus leucopterus 316 
Plegadis falcinellus 341 
plengei, Anairetes 242 
plumbeus, Turdus 344 
Pluvialis squatarola 342 
Podiceps cristatus 336 
podiceps, Podilymbus 340 
Podilymbus podiceps 340 
poecilolaemus, Dendropicos 339 
poeciloptera, Nescolopeus 279 
poensis, Neocossyphus 357-358 
Pogoniulus pusillus 397 
Pogonocichla intensa 377-378 

— stellata 350-351, 377-378 
Pogonocichla stellata pallidiflava 

subsp. nov. 350 
Poicephalus meyeri 337 

— senegalus337 
poliocephala, Alethe 351-352 
poliocephalus, Turdus 282, 283 
polionota, Leucopternis 278 
Polioptila caerulea 344 
poliothorax, Alcippe 353 
polleni, Xenopirostris 282 
polyglotta, Hippolais 328, 333 
polyglottos, Mimus 343 
Polyplectron emphanum 279 

— malacensis 316 
Pomarea mendozae 283 
pondicerianus, Francolinus 317 
Popelairia popelairii 388 
popelairii, Popelairia 388 
porini, Turdus 363 
Porphyrio albus 279 


Porphyrio stanleyi 279 
Porphyrula martinica 341 
Porzanula palmeri 279 
pretrei, Amazona 281 
principalis, Campephilus 282 
pritzbueri, Turdus 282 
Procellaria aequinoctialis 253 

— atlantica253 

— cinerea249, 253 

— conspicillata 253 

— glacialoides 254 

— hasitata2j4 

— mollis 253 

— parkinsoni 277 
procerus, Hemignathus 283 
Prodotiscus regulus 338 
productus, Nestor 280 
prunellei, Coeligena 281 
Psephotus pulcherrimus 281 
psittacea, Psittirostra 284 
Psittacula eupatria 281 

— krameri 317 
Psittirostra psittacea 284 
Pterocles senegallus 310 
Pterodroma brevirostris 249, 253 

— caribbaea 277 

— incerta2j3 

— leucoptera 277 

— macroptera25 3 

— pteropygia 277 
pteropygia, Pterodroma 277 
Ptilinopus roseicapilla 279 

— superbus 311 
puella, Irena 317 
Puffinus assimilis 253,254 

— cinereus 253, 254 

— gravis 25 3 

— tenuirostris 271 
pulchella, Neophema 28 1 
pulchellus, Caprimulgus 317 
pulcherrimus, Psephotus 281 
pulchra, Pipreola 296 
punctatus, Falco 278 
purpurea, Ardea 336 
pusilla, Coenocorypha 279 
pusillus, Calidris 342 

— Pogoniulus 397 
Pycnonotus cafer 317 

— jacosus3i7 

— leucogenys 317 

— sinensis 317 

— taivanus 317 

— zeylanicus 316 
pygargus, Circus 328 
pygmaeus, Phalacrocorax 383-385 
Pyriglena atra 282 

pyrrhocephalus, Phoenicophaeus 281 
pyrrhogaster, Dendropicos 339 
Pyrrhura cruentata 280 

Quiscalus niger 345 

— palustris 284 

rafflesi, Megalaima 316 
Ramphocinclus brachyurus 282 
Ramphodon dohrnii 281 
rapax, Aquila 315 
Raphus cucullatus 279 

— solitarius 279 
recurvirostris, Avocettula 369 
regulus, Prodotiscus 338 
reichenowi, Drepanorhynchus 377 

— Nectarinia 377 
religiosa, Gracula 314, 315, 316 
rhinoceros, Buceros 316 
Rhinoplax vigil 282 
Rhinoptilus bitorquatus 279 
Rhipidura aureola 316 
Rhodonessa caryophyllacea 278 
Rhynchopsitta pacyhrhyncha 280 
Rhynochetos jubatus 279 
riefferii, Pipreola 294-299 
Riparia riparia 330 

riparia, Riparia 330 
risoria, Streptopelia 315,335 
roseicapilla, Ptilinopus 279 
roseogrisea, Streptopelia 335 
rostrata, Streptopelia 280 
Rostratula benghalensis 337 
Rostrhamus sociabilis 318, 320 
Rowettia goughensis 251 
ruber, Phaethornis 294 
rubescens, Gallicolumba 280 
rubidiceps, Chloephaga 277 
rubrocapilla, Pipra 270 
rubrocristata, Ampelion 258 
ruckeri, Threnetes 393, 394 
rufa, Loxops 284 
rufaxilla, Ampelion 259 

— Leptoptila 364 
rufescens, Acrocephalus 333 

— CUUS317 

ruficapilla, Spermophaga 361-362 
ruficeps, Stachyris 316 
ruficollis, Corvus 310 

— Stelgidopteryx 343 

— Tachybaptus 336 
rufifrons, Stachyris 316 
rufigena, Caprimulgus 338 
rufigenis, Atlapetes 258 
rufinus, Buteo 328 
rufipectoralis, Ochthoeca 258 
rufocinerea, Monticola 397 
rugensis, Metabolus 283 
rustica, Hirundo 330, 343, 387 
ruticilla, Setophaga 344, 345 

sagrae, Myiarchus 343 
sandvicensis, Nesochen 277 
sandwichensis, Passerculus 346 

satyra, Tragopan 3 1 5 

saularis, Copsychus 316, 317 

savesi, Aegotheles 281 

saxatilis, Monticola 331 

Sceloglaux albifacies 281 

schoenobaenus, Acrocephalus 328, 332 

scirpaceus, Acrocephalus 328, 332 

sclateri, Doliornis 265 

scolopacea, Eudynamis 316, 317, 387 

Scotopelia bouvieri 338 

— peli338 

— ussheri338 
scutulata, Asarcornis 278 
Scytalopus magellanicus 258 
sechellarum, Copsychus 282 

— Foudia 284 
Seiurus aurocapillus 345 

— noveboracensis 345 
semifuscus, Chlorospingus 296-299 
semipalmatus, Charadrius 342 
semitorquata, Streptopelia 337, 397 
semperi, Leucopeza 283 
senegala, Tchagra 398 
senegalensis, Centropus 337 
senegallus, Pterocles 310 
senegalus, Poicephalus 337 
senex, Megapodius 278 
septimus, Batrachostomus 317 
sericeus, Orthotomus 316 
Serinus 382, 397 

Serinus tristriatus 397 
Setophaga ruticilla 344, 345 
Sheppardia aequatorialis 353-354 
Sheppardia aequatorialis 

pallidigularis subsp. nov. 354 
sibilatrix, Phylloscopus 328, 333 
silvicola, Otus 317 
similis, Anthus 398 
simplex, Passer 306-309 
sinensis, Pycnonotus 317 
skua, Catharacta 254 
sladeniae, Apus 338 
smithii, Anas 336 
smyrnensis, Halcyon 317 
sociabilis, Rostrhamus 318, 320 
solitaria, Tringa 342 
solitarius, Buteo 278 

— Monticola 331 

— Raphus 279 
somalica, Mirafra 383 
soui, Crypturellus 363, 365 
sparsa, Anas 336 
sparverius, Falco 341 
Spermophaga ruficapilla 361-362 
Spermophaga ruficapilla kilgoris 

subsp. nov. 361 
Spheniscus demersus 277 
Sphyrapicus varius 343 
spilocephalus, Otus 317 
Spindalis zena 345 

splendens, Corvus 317 
splendida, Neophema 281 
squamigera, Anairetes 242 
squamigera, Brachypteracias 282 
squamulatus, Turdoides 399-402 
squatarola, Pluvialis 342 
Stachyris erythroptera 316 

— maculata3i6 

— nigricollis 316 

— ruficeps 315 

— rufifrons3i6 
Stanley i, Porphyrio 279 
Stelgidopteryx ruficollis 343 

stellata, Pogonocichla 350-351, 377-378 
stellatus, Batrachostomus 317 
Sterna albifrons 383 

— balaenarum 279 

— nilotica 306-308 

— sumatrana 387 

— vittata2 54 
stokesii, Xenicus 282 
stolidus, Anous 251,254 
Streptopelia capicola 397 

— chinensis 317 

— decaocto 334-335 

— decipiens337 

— hypopyrrha 337 

— picturata 280 

— risoria 315, 335 

— roseogrisea 335 

— rostrata 280 

— semitorquata 337,397 

— turtur 329, 337 

stresemanni, Zaratornis 256, 257, 261, 264 

striatus, Butorides 387 

strigirostris, Didunculus 280 

Strigops habroptilus 280 

subbuteo, Falco 328, 329 

Sula leucogaster 340 

sumatrana, Sterna 387 

sunia, Otus 317 

superbus, Ptilinopus 311 

superciliaris, Melanerpes 343 

superciliosa, Ophrysia 278 

superciliosus, Phaethornis 388-395 

surda, Touit 280 

Surniculus lugubris 316 

sutorius, Orthotomus 317 

svecica, Luscinia 328, 331 

swinhoii, Hierophasis 278 

sylvestris, Tricholimnas 279 

Sylvia atricapilla 299-304 

— melanocephala 299-304 
syndactyla, Bleda 358-359 
Syrmaticus ellioti 279 

Tachybaptus ruficollis 336 
Tachycineta bicolor 343 
taivanus, Pycnonotus 317 
tallmanorum, Pipreola 294-295 

tanagra, Turnagra 283 
Tangara cay ana 369 
Taphrospilus hypostictus 388 
Tauraco persa 337 
Tchagra senegala 398 
Tchitrea viridis 398 
Telecanthus ussheri 338 
temminckii, Eurostopodus 316, 317 
tenuirostris, Puffinus 271 
Terpsiphone bourbonnensis 283 

— corvina283 

— paradisi 316 
Thalasseus maximus 342 
Thalassidroma fregetta 254 
Thalurania furcata 367, 390, 393 
thekla, Galerida 383 
Thinornis novaeseelandiae 279 
Thraupis episcopus 369 

— palmarum 369 
Threnetes leucurus 388-395 

— ruckeri 393, 394 
thula, Egretta 340 
Tiaris olivacea 346 
tigrina, Dendroica 344 
Topazapella 367 
Torgos nubicus 244-245 

— tracheliotus 244-247, 336 
Torgos tracheliotus negevensis 

subsp. nov. 245 
Touit melanotus 280 

— surda 280 
tracheliotus, Torgos 244-247, 336 

— Vultur 244 
Tragopan blythi 278 

— caboti 278 

— melanocephalus 278 

— satyra 315 
traversi, Petroica 283 
Treron australis 311 

— waalia 311 
trichas, Geothlypis 345 
Tricholimnas sylvestris 279 
tricolor, Ara 280 

— Egretta 340 
trifasciatus, Nesomimus 282 
trigonostigma, Dicaeum 275 
Tringa flavipes 311, 342 

— melanoleuca 342 
— ■ solitaria 342 

tristis, Acridotheres 317, 387 
tristriatus, Serinus 397 
trivialis, Anthus 331 
trocaz, Columba 280 
trochilus, Phylloscopus 328, 397 
Troglodytes aedon 282 

— hirtensis 282 

— mesoleucos 282 

— troglodytes 282 
troglodytes, Troglodytes 282 
tropica, Fregetta 249 

tropicus, Corvus 284 
Turdoides jubaensis 399-402 

— leucocephala 399, 400 

— Ieucopygius40i, 402 

— squamulatus 399-402 
Turdoides squamulatus carolinae 

subsp. nov. 399 
Turdus abyssinicus 348-350, 363, 377 
Turdus abyssinicus fuscatus 

subsp. nov. 348 

— — mwaki subsp. nov. 349 

— — potirxi nomen novum 363 
Turdus albicollis 365, 368 

— grayi 285-289 

Turdus grayi lanyoni subsp. nov. 287 
Turdus mareensis 283 

— naumanni 363 

— olivaceus 396 

— plumbeus 344 

— poliocephalus 282-283 

— pritzbueri 282 

— umbrinus 286-287 

— unicolor 317 
Turnagra capensis 283 

— tanagra 283 
Turnix nigricollis 375 
Turtur abyssinicus 337 

— afer337 
turtur, Streptopelia 329, 337 
Tympanuchus cupido 278 
typica, Coracina 282 
Tyrannus caudifasciatus 343 
Tyto alba 317, 343, 375 

— capensis 338, 372-375 

ultramarina, Vini 280 
umbra, Otus 317 
umbrovirens, Phylloscopus 397 
uncinatus, Chondrohierax 318-322 
undulatus, Zebrilus 277 
unicolor, Chloropipo 271 

— Mesoenas 279 

— Turdus 317 
urbica, Delichon 330 
urinatrix, Pelecanoides 254 
uropygialis, Carduelis 258 
ussheri, Scotopelia 338 

— Telecanthura 338 

Vanellus coronatus 383 

— crassirostris 337 

— indicus 317 

— macropterus 279 
vanikorensis, Aerodramus 316 
varia, Mniotilta 344 
variolus, Cacomantis 316 
varius, Sphyrapicus 343 
vermivorus, Helmitheros 344 
verreauxi, Leptotila 364 
vigil, Rhinoplax 282 

villaviscencio, Campylopter us 383 
vinaceigula, Egretta 322-326 
Vini peruviana 280 
Vini ultramarina 280 
violacea, Nyctanassa 340 
virens, Contopus 343 

— Icteria 345 
Vireo crassirostris 344 

— magister 344 
virescens, Butorides 340 

virgo, Anthropoides 315, 383-384 
viridis, Merops 317 

— Tchitrea 398 
vitellina, Dendroica 345 
vittata, Amazona 281 

— Pachyptila 249 

— Sterna 254 
vociferus, Charadrius 341 
Vultur nubicus 244 

— tracheliotus 244 

waalia, Treron 311 
wallichii, Catreus 279, 315 
wallicus, Pezoporus 281 
whartoni, Ducula 279 
wilsoni, Callaeas 284 
— Hemignathus 283 

wilsonia, Charadrius 342 

xanthomus, Agelaius 284 
xanthonotus, Oriolus 316 
xanthornus, Oriolus 316 
Xenicus longipes 282 

— lyalli 282 

— stokesii 282 
Xenodacnis parina 258 
Xenopirostris polleni 282 

yanacensis, Leptasthenura 258 

Zaratornis 256-265 

— stresemanni 256,257,261, 264 
zealandicus, Cyanoramphus 281 
Zebrilus undulatus 277 

zena, Spindalis 345 
Zenaida asiatica 342 

— aurita 342 

zenkeri, Melignomon 290-291 
zeylanica, Megalaima 316 
zeylanicus, Pycnonotus 316 
zeylonensis, Ketupa 317 
Zoothera dauma 239 
Zosterops 315 
Zosterops abyssinica 397 


Bull. 101, 1981 

p. 240, line 32: 'K. F. BETTON', not 'K. BRETTON' 

p. 244, line 3 : 'Bertel Bruun', not 'Bertel Brunn' 

p. 264, line 16: ' ' stresemann? ', not i Stresemanni'' 

pp. 266-267, references to Plate on p. 262: 'Plate 2A a, b, c, d, e', not 'Plate 1 a, b, c, d, e' 

p. 268, line 21 : 'See Plate 2B', not 'See Plates' 

p. 273, line 29 'J. G. PARKER', not 'J. B. PARKER' 

p. 280, line 3 from foot: i melanonota\ not ' ' melanonotus* 

p. 282, line 23: i erythronotos\ not 'erythronotu? 

p. 284, line 33 : i vide\ not ''fide' 

p. 287, lines 15, 25 : 'intergrades', not 'integrades' 

p. 316, line 3: i Macronous\ not 'Macronus' 

p. 316, line 8: 'temmincki? ', not ""temminckf 

p. 328, line 39: i rufinus\ not ""refinus* 

p. 342, line 39: i Leptotila\ not i Leptoptila' 

p. 347, line 4 of text: 'southeast', not 'southwest* 

p. 352, line 5 from foot: i chyulu\ not 'chyulu' 

p. 375, line 18: add 'Chappuis (Malimbus 2, 1980: 15) lists a tape-recording.' 

p. 384, line 27: 'bones', not 'bhnes' 

ISSN 0007-1595 

Bulletin of the 

British Ornithologists' Club 

Edited by 
Dr. J. F. MONK 



8 APR 1982 


Volume 102 No. 1 

March 1982 


The Meeting arranged for 13 January had unfortunately to be postponed: 
there was little time for Members to notify their intention to attend, as meeting 
notices had been delayed by causes beyond the Club's control, and then it 
became clear that a railway strike was going to cause the cancellation of 
British Railways' train services on the evening of the Meeting. 

Fortunately it has been possible to re-arrange this Meeting, which will be 
held on 22 June, as described below, when Members will be able to hear 
Dr. Seller. 

Tuesday, 18 May 1982 in the Senior Common Room, South Side, Imperial 
College, Prince's Gardens, S.W.7 at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m. Mr. P. J. Conder, 

O.B.E., who has been in Pakistan in an advisory capacity for I.U. C.N./ W.W.F., 
will speak on Some Wetlands of Sind. Those wishing to attend should send 
their acceptance with a cheque for £5.70 a person to the Hon. Secretary at 2 
Chestnut Lane, Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR (telephone Sevenoaks (0732 
50313) to arrive not later than first post on Thursday, 1 3 May. 

Tuesday, 22 June, 1982, at the same venue and time Dr. T. J. Seller of 

the Department of Zoology and Applied Entomology of Imperial College 
will speak Are 'bullfinches and Fruit Crops really incompatible? Those wishing 
to attend should send their acceptance with a cheque for £5.70 a person to 
the Hon. Secretary (address above) to arrive not later than first post on 
Thursday, 17 June. 

Tuesday, 20 July 1982 at the same venue and time Mr. T. M. Gullick 

who has lived in Spain for a number of years, will speak on Birds in central 
Spain. Those wishing to attend should send their acceptance with a cheque 
for £5.70 a person to the Hon. Treasurer at 53 Osterley Road, Isleworth, 
Middlesex TW7 4PW (telephone 01-560 1019) to arrive not later than first 
post on Thursday, 1 5 July. 

Tuesday, 21 September 1982 at the some venue and time, Dr. David 
Houston will speak on Vultures. (This is a week earlier than the date 
announced in the Bullentin Vol. 101 No. 4.) 

Volume 48 of the Bulletin, out of print for many years, has 
now been reproduced and copies are available: single num- 
bers £2 each, index £4 with a special price of £20 for the 
whole volume. 

British Ornithologists' Club 1982 

I [ 102(1)] 

Bulletin of the 


Vol. 102 No. 1 Published: 26 March 1982 


The 1982 Annual General Meeting of the British Ornithologists* Club will be held in 
the Senior Common Room, South Side, Imperial College, Prince's Gardens, London, 
S.W.7 at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, 18 May 1982. 


1. Minutes of the last Annual General Meeting {Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 10 1: 

2. Report of the Committee and Accounts for 198 1. 

3. Election of Officers. 
The Committee proposes that:- 

(a) Mrs. Diana Bradley be re-elected Honorary Treasurer. 

(b) Mr. R. E. F. Peal be re-elected Honorary Secretary. 

(c) Mr. P. J. Conder, O.B.E., be elected a member of the Committee vice Mr. R. D. 
Chancellor, who retires by rotation and is ineligible for re-election. 

4. Any other business of which notice shall have been given in accordance with Rule (7). 

by order of the Committee, 


Honorary Secretary 


During 198 1 new leaflets were produced with information about the Club and the Bulletin 
and were dispatched as inserts in other journals and by direct mail. It is pleasing to record 
that 60 new Members joined and that there were 47 new non-member subscribers to the 
Bulletin, the largest inflow in any year in the Club's history. Five Members resigned and 
nine were struck off under Rule (4). The Committee deeply regrets to report the death of 
Captain Collingwood Ingram, Member 1901-1981. At the end of the year there were 394 
Members (U.K. 231, other countries 163) paid up to date and 194 non-member subscribers 
(U.K. 51, other countries 143). 

Six Meetings were held during the year, all in the Senior Common Room, South Side, 
Imperial College. Attendances totalled 236, the highest average per Meeting for 19 years 
although the total did not reach those of the two preceding years, when greater numbers 
of Meetings were held. 

In March, institutions were notified of the availability of Bulletin back numbers and sales 
of these rose appreciably. We are most grateful to Dr. Mervyn Ingram for the gift to the 
Club of Captain Collingwood Ingram's bound set of the Bulletin Vols. 1-45 and for loose 
copies of nearly all subsequent issues : the bound volumes contain many issues of which 
the Club held no copies and are especially appreciated. Captain Josias Cunningham, 
Senior, has very kindly given to the Club his copies of the whole of Vol. 48, filling the last 
gap in the Club's set of reference copies and we have pleasure in recording our thanks to 
him. We are much indebted to Dr. David Snow for continuing to undertake the work of 
handling the stock of Bulletin back numbers. 

It has been possible in Volume 101 of the Bulletin successfully to overcome some of the 
backlog resulting from the priorities required by the centennial issue in March 1980, 
mainly as a result of a very satisfactory response to the effective sales promotion the Hon. 
Secretary has initiated, enabling the Club to afford more pages than were originally con- 
sidered likely. One of the Editor's main aims is still to reduce the delay between the date 
a paper is received and its appearance in print. 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i982: I02(l)] Z 

Vol. 101 contained nearly 40 papers with a wide geographical coverage from South 
America to the Philippines, Tristan da Cunha to Israel and Egypt, U.S.A., the West Indies 
to West, South and East Africa, Madagascar and Mozambique. Including those involved 
in multiple authorship, the papers involved authors from the United Kingdom or U.K. 
expatriates (28), U.S.A. (20), South Africa (5), Canada (2), Belgium (2), Austria (1) and Israel 
(1), some being counted more than once. 

It is not intended to continue the error perpetuated in Vol. 101 by which pagination was 
mistakenly continued direct from Vol. 100 (4) and then, necessarily, for the rest of the 

While the Editor was abroad from April to September, we were fortunate enough to be 
able to call upon the services of C. W. Benson, with his long experience of the. Bulletin. We 
are most grateful to him for seeing the June and September issues into print and for 
editing with his usual expertise some of the papers in them as well as others submitted in 
that period. 

The audited accounts for 1981 are not yet available but copies will be tabled at the A.G.M. 
and published in a later number of the Bulletin. Members wishing to see a copy before the 
A.G.M. should inform the Hon. Treasurer. 

A major extension in distribution of the Stripe-backed 

Prinia Prima gracilis in Somalia 

by J. S. Ash 

Received 6 May 1981 

The Stripe-backed Prinia Prinia gracilis in Africa is known from 2 subspecies 
confined to the northeast of the continent. The nominate form is stated by 
White (i960) to enter "Sudan from Kerma to Khartoum in Nile Valley", 
and a darker race, P. g. carlo, along the "Red Sea coast from Red Sea province 
of Sudan to Zeyla on border of British Somaliland , \ Archer & Godman 
(1961) also indicate a coastal distribution for carlo, but extend its range east- 
wards in Somalia as far as Bulhar (io°24'N, 44°24'E); and from the specimens 
— all coastal — plotted in Hall & Moreau (1970) the range is extended 
somewhat further east to°27'N, 45°oo'E near Berbera. The impression 
is given by these authors, and confirmed for Ethiopia by Urban & Brown 
(1971), that carlo has an entirely coastal distribution. 

This restriction to a coastal habitat is not entirely true for Somalia, and 
definitely is not the case in Ethiopia (Fig. 1). In a journey in May 1979 with 
J. E. Miskell and A. A. Murshid along the northern coast of Somalia from 
Zeila (n°2i'N, 43°28'E) to Berbera (io°26'N, 45°o2'E), we found this 
species to be very common, particularly in the extensive Suaeda bush on the 
great flats behind the coastal dunes. However, inland of this zone the species 
was also common, particularly in Tamarisk scrub in the dry wadis, even up 
to 35 km inland, such as at Geriad (io°5 5 , N, 43°22 / E) at 75 km south of 
Zeila on the track from Borama (o9°56'N, 43°n'E). We also found it to be 
fairly common on Aibat (ii^i'N, 43°27'E), the most distant of the islands 
in the Gulf of Aden off Zeila. 

In Ethiopia this prinia occurs much further inland. Between Aseita 
(1 i°34'N, 4i°27'E) and Tendaho (1 i>'N, 4o°57'E) along the Awash River 
in the Danakil desert, I found it in several years in the period 1970- 1977, 
particularly in dense Tamarisk woodland, but also along the irrigation 
channels at Tendaho. Tendaho is 200 km from the nearest sea, but to the 

[Bull.Brit.Ortt.Cl.i982: I02(l)] 

Fig. 1 . The distribution by £° squares of the Stripe-backed Prinia Prima gracilis in Ethiopia, 
Djibouti and Somalia. X = recorded in the respective £° square. (Drawing by Alain 

south and west of there the species is unknown. However, to the north and 
nearer to the coast, Dr. D. Summers-Smith (in litt. 11 Nov 1972) reported it 
from Lake Giuletti (i3°i5'N, 4i°oo / E) in 1972, and to the east I found the 
birds in 3 years actually below sea level in the Dobi depression (n°5 3'N, 
4i°42'E). On the Red Sea coast it occurs in a variety of coastal vegetation, 
including young mangroves. It was common around Djibouti (u°35'N, 
43°09'E) when I was there in December 1975. 

In 1978 I first found Stripe-backed Prinias on 3 November in a narrow 
belt of Atriplex growing on beach-head dunes in the Mailable area (o2°i2'N, 
45°38'E) at 35 km northeast of Mogadishu in southern Somalia. Since then 
I have searched many kilometres of coastline from 45 km northeast of 
Uarsheik (o2°i8'N, 45°49'E) to Kismayu (oo°22'S, 42°33'E) and beyond 
and found this prinia only at the northern end of this stretch of coast, at 
6 sites which are (Fig. 1.), from north to south: — 30 km northeast of Uarsheki 
(=Uarsciek) (o2°26'N, 46°o2'E); 14 km northeast of Uarsheik (o2°22'N, 
45°45 / E); Mailable area; 20 km northeast of Mogadishu (o2°o8'N, 45°3i'E); 
14 kmnorthof Mogadishu (o2°o7'N, 45 °29'E); Mogadishu airport (o2°o2'N, 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.CL 19 82: 102(1) ] 4 

During another journey with J. E. Miskell along parts of the east coast 
and eastern section of the north coast in April and May 1980, several P. 
gracilis were present in Atripkx at 42 km (o3°oo'N, 46°36'E) and 49 km 
(o3°o5'N, 46°42'E) north of Adale, and another at Hafun Bay (io°i8'N, 
5o°5 3'E) in coastal Tamarisk. Around the "Horn" the species was common 
in low mangrove in the lagoons at Habo (n°47'N, 5o°32'E) and Alula 
(n°5 8'N, 5o°i5'E), and also in wadi Tamarisk at Tohen(n°44'N, 5i°i5'E). 
Along the north coast it was common to abundant in coastal Tamarisk at 
the mouth of the Garas wadi (n°i7'N, 49°o2'E), and at 29 km (n°i7'N, 
48°2 5'E) and 83 km (ii°i5'N, 48°5 2'E) east of and also at Las Khoreh 
(n°09'N, 48°n'E), also in Tamarisk. 

The newly found southern population is confined to a 200 km stretch of 
coastline northeast from Mogadishu, but there are only a few sites along this 
coast where the habitat is suitable, if indeed the species is restricted, as it 
seems to be, to the Atripkx there. The new records along the north coast 
and extending down the east coast to Hafun suggest that the species will in 
fact be found more or less continuously all round the Somalia coast where 
suitable habitat exists from Zeila to Mogadishu. There are, however, long 
stretches of unsuitable coastal habitat, such as the extensive sea-cliffs in the 
north and the bare sand dunes further south, and I failed to see any in a search 
of 16 km of suitable habitat on the coast and wadis around Mait (io°58'N, 
47°o4'E) in the north in May 1979, and none on the east coast around Obbia 
(o5°2i'N, 48°33'E) and Eil (o 7 °58'N, 49°49'E) in April 1980. South of 
Mogadishu, its presence may be less likely, for the range of several species 
ceases in this area (notably that of 3 endemic larks, Calandrella obbiensis, 
Alaemon hamertoni and Mirafra somalica). 

The southern population is separated by 1000 km of coastline from the 
nearest north Somalia birds, suggesting that there might be a taxonomic 
difference between the two. However, 2 fresh specimens from Zeila in May 
do not differ from Mailable birds. 

Mackworth-Praed & Grant (i960) state that carlo breeds in July on the 
coast of Sudan; in Ethiopia eggs are laid in all months from December to 
May (Urban & Brown 1971), and I saw birds building at the end of December 
at Massawa. Nothing is known about the breeding season of P. gracilis in the 
north of Somalia, but in the Mogadishu area 3 pairs laid in December and 
one in May. The nests were a loose untidy dome of rootlets and dry 
Cymodocea, firmly lined with a thick cup of felted seed-heads of an Aerva sp., 
placed 30-60 cm up in Atripkx bushes in sites sheltered from the strong 
wind. No eggs have been seen, but broods of young numbered 2, 3, 3 and 4. 

Prinias may be difficult to find during periods of strong monsoon winds, 
for they then remain low in thick cover. There is some suggestion of local 
movement, for at 2 sites which I had searched twice previously without 
seeing any, I found what were apparently new arrivals in March and April. 
At the first site, on a day of light wind, there were 2 birds flying above the 
beach at 6-10 m heading into the breeze. Every now and then they dropped 
into Atripkx bushes where they called excitedly before taking off again. 
Possibly the birds from Mogadishu in February and March were wanderers 
from slightly further north. In these various local populations, worthwhile 
further investigation could be made into their choice of habitat, namely the 

5 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: I02(l)] 

inland association with Tamarix, the coastal association in the north with 
Suaeda, Tamarix and mangrove and with Atriplex in the south. 

Acknowledgements: I thank Mrs. M. Jaeger, J. E. Miskell, A. A. Murshid and J. Mwaki 
for their help in capturing birds and preparing specimens, and my wife for the identification 
of plants. 

References : 

Archer, G. & Godman, E. M. 1961. The Birds of British Somaliland and the Gulf of Aden. 

Edinburgh & London : Oliver & Boyd. 
Hall, B. P. & Moreau, R. E. 1970. An Atlas of Speciation in African Passerine Birds. 

London : British Museum (Nat. Hist.). 
Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. i960. Birds of Eastern and North Eastern Africa. 

London : Longmans. 
Urban, E. K. & Brown, L. H. 1971. A Checklist of theBirds of Ethiopia. Addis Ababa: Haile 

Sallassie I University. 
White, C. M. N. i960. A checklist of the Ethiopian Muscicapidae (Sylviinae) Part 1. 

Occ. Pap. Nat. Mus. Southern Rhod. 3 (24B) : 399-430. 

Address: Dr. J. S. Ash, Division of Birds, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian 
Institution, Washington, D.C. 20560, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

First Zambian records of Chestnut-banded Sandplover 

Charadrius pallidus and observations of White-fronted 

Sandplover C. marginatus and Cape Teal Anas capensis 

at the same locality 

by P. B. Taylor 

Received 6 fune 1981 

On 23 August 1980 I found a Chestnut-banded Sandplover C. pallidus 
feeding alongside Kittlitz's Sandplovers C. pecuarius at the margin of a 
permanent pool at Akatiti Dam, an inactive mine tailings dam at Luanshya, 
Zambia (i3°io'S, 28°24'E). The pool is in an area of bare sand and its 
margins have very little fringing vegetation: during the dry season of 1980 
the area contained breeding C. pecuarius and a few feeding C. marginatus. 

The C. pallidus was easily visible because of its very pale upperparts, 
whereas the darker C. pecuarius were difficult to see against the wet sand. I 
observed the bird at distances down to 1 5 metres, and after feeding it sat on 
damp sand and dozed. Its head appeared larger and broader than that of 
C. pecuarius, although both species were about the same in body size. Above, 
it was very pale, plain grey with only a slight brownish tinge. The head 
pattern was distinctive: forecrown to nape pale grey, forehead and face 
white with a broad white stripe over the eye. There was a narrow dark 
smudge behind the eye, and dark colouring on the lores not extending to the 
base of the bill. Below, the bird was white with a complete and well-defined 
narrow brown band across the base of the neck merging at the sides with 
the grey of the upperparts. The bill was black, distinctly shorter and finer 
than the bills of C. pecuarius or C. marginatus, the legs were greenish-grey, 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.CI. 19 Sz: 102(1) ] 6 

and the bird stood shorter than C. pecuarius with a rather furtive stance. The 
flight feathers on the open wing were darker than the upperparts and there 
was a diffuse pale bar on the primaries extending to the secondaries. The 
tail had very white sides and a dark centre. Flight calls were "chip" and 

PIP . 

I failed to relocate the bird later that day but I observed several C. 
marginatus at local tailings dams and noted that these birds were very gingery 
brown above and often had a rich buff wash on the underparts. 

I concluded that the bird was possibly of the southern race pallidus. I had 
previously seen the East African race venustus in Kenya and I recollected it as 
smaller and darker above than the Luanshya bird. P. L. Britton and A. J. Tree 
have seen my description and sketch of the bird and agree (in lift.) that the 
southern race is more likely. 

Despite regular visits to the Luanshya tailings dams I did not see this 
species again until 13 September 1980, when I found a single bird feeding at 
the Akatiti pool. I obtained excellent views at very close range. The bird 
was very similar in appearance to the August bird but the legs seemed darker 
grey-green, the breastband was brighter rufous brown and there was a 
rufous brown line running from the dark patch behind the eye down 
the side of the head and neck between the grey upperparts and the white 
underparts. This line did not reach the ends of the breastband. Otherwise 
the head pattern was as previously described. C. pecuarius, C. marginatus and 
Ringed Plover C. hiaticula were present for comparison. Later that day the 
bird had gone and despite numerous visits to tailings dams in the area I 
failed to record this species again. 

An examination of skins at the British Museum of Natural History, Tring, 
has satisfied me that the Luanshya records were of C. pallidus pallidus. Full 
details of the sightings are on file at Tring. Identification of small plovers is 
often difficult but in my opinion the only species with which these Luanshya 
birds could have been confused is C. marginatus and R. J. Dowsett (in litt.) 
mentions that he has seen C. marginatus with a rich buff pectoral band in 
Nigeria. I have seen many C. marginatus with richly-coloured underparts and 
at least one bird with a distinct brown breastband at Luanshya. My obser- 
vations suggest, however, that such well-marked C. marginatus are also very 
richly-coloured above and are thus easily distinguishable from C. pallidus. 
This impression is supported by my examination of C. marginatus skins at 
Tring, where adults and immatures with richly-coloured underparts were 
also richly-coloured above. 

C. pallidus is typically found by saline lakes and pans and occasionally on 
the seashore (Snow 1978), and has not previously been recorded from 
Zambia, where such habitat does not exist. A. J. Tree (in litt.) suggests that 
Zambian birds would most probably have wandered from the nearest 
breeding area, in Botswana, and it is possible that adverse conditions in 
areas of southwestern Africa could have prompted some individuals to 
wander. That it can wander is also shown by a record from the Victoria Falls 
on 14 Oct. 1979 (Pollard 1980). The tailings dams in Zambia's Copperbelt 
Province have shallow pools and large expanses of open sand and mud, and 
are perhaps the most likely habitat in Zambia to be temporarily attractive to 
this species, although the water is not saline. 

7 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i982: 102(f)] 


At the time of my second sighting of C. pallidus I found three Cape Teal 
A. capensis at Akatiti in a flock of 200 Red-billed Teal A. erythrorhynchos . 
Although there is no information on possible movements of A. capensis in 
Zambia (Benson et al. 1971), it is perhaps an irregular wanderer from drier 
southern African areas (Benson etaL 1971) and this record is the most northerly 
one for Zambia, lending further support to the suggestion of unusually long- 
range movements of birds from southern areas at this time. R. J. Dowsett 
(in lift.) confirms that previous records of A. capensis from Copperbelt and 
Northern Provinces (Benson & White 1957) were found to be incorrect 
(Benson et al. 1970) and were therefore excluded from Benson et al. (1971), 
although they were reinstated (incorrectly) by Winterbottom (1974). In 
recent years this duck has occurred in Zambia only as far north as Lusaka, 
some 300 km south of Luanshya(D. R. Aspinwall in Zambian Ornithological 
Society Newsletters, Jul-Oct 1977 and May-June 1980). 


During the dry season of 1980 the Luanshya tailings dams seemed to be 
particularly attractive to C. marginatus and R. J. Casalis de Pury and I noted 
larger numbers of these birds than in previous years. We also found this 
species breeding at one locality (adult with a small downy chick on 1 9 July 
and adult with a small downy chick on 23 and 26 August). I can trace no 
other breeding records from Copperbelt Province, an area outside this 
bird's usual range in Zambia (Benson et al. 1971). Observer coverage of the 
dams was more extensive and frequent in 1980 than in previous years, so it 
is not clear whether our observations reflect unusually good numbers or 
whether this species has been overlooked in the past, but these birds were 
certainly widespread in suitable habitat at Luanshya in 1980. None of the 
C. marginatus which I have seen at Luanshya could be attributed to the 
extreme southern African race marginatus on the basis of plumage characters 
given by White (1965). 

Acknowledgements: I am grateful to A. J. Tree for his comments on an earlier draft of this 

References : 

Benson, C. W., Brooke, R. K., Dowsett, R. J. & Irwin, M. P. S. 1970. Notes on the birds 
of Zambia. Arnoldia 40: 1-59. 
— — — — 1 97 1. The Birds of Zambia. London: Collins. 

Benson, C. W. & White, C. M. N. 1957. Checklist of the Birds of Northern Rhodesia. Lusaka: 
Government Printer. 

Pollard, C. J. W. 1980. A visual record of Chestnut-banded Sandplover at the Victoria 
Falls. Honeyguide 102: 37. 

Snow, D. W. (Ed.) 1978. An Atlas of Speciation in African Non-passerine Birds. London: 
British Museum (Nat. Hist.). 

Snow, D. W. 1979. Atlas of speciation in African non-passerine birds — addenda and corri- 
genda. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 99 : 66. 

White, C. M. N. 1965. A Revised Checklist of African Non-Passerine Birds. Lusaka: Govern- 
ment Printer. 

Winterbottom, J. M. 1974. The Cape Teal. Ostrich 45 : 1 10-132. 

Address: P. B. Taylor, P.O. Box 25138, Nairobi, Kenya. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

[Bull.Brit.OrtuCl.19S 2: 102(1)] 8 

The distribution of fused phalanges of the inner toe in 

the Accipitridae 

by Storrs L. Olson 

Received 6 June 19 81 

In certain members of the Accipitridae, the basal phalanges (1 and 2) of the 
inner toe (digit II) are fused to form a single functional unit. Although this 
condition has in the past been considered to have taxonomic significance, I 
have found that all the literature concerning the distribution of this character 
is either incomplete or inaccurate. As this appears to be a uniquely derived 
character that can perhaps be used to define a small, monopbyletic group 
within the large and diverse family of hawks and eagles, it is of particular 
value because the intrafamilial systematics of the Accipitridae have been very 
poorly documented. Therefore, I conducted a comprehensive survey of the 
osteology of the bones of the inner toe in the Accipitridae in order to 
determine more precisely which taxa possess the fused condition of the 


Most of the specimens I examined were skeletons in the collections of the 
National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, 
D.C., and the American Museum of Natural History, New York. These 
were augmented by selected specimens from the Museum of Zoology, 
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, 
University of California, Berkeley. The sequence used below is that of 
Morony, Bock & Farrand(i975). 

The following taxa were found to have the fused condition of the basal phalanges of 
the inner toe (number of individuals examined in parentheses): Ictinia plumbea (7), /. 
mississippiensis ( 1 ), Milvus migrans (16), Haliastur sphenurus (i),H. indus (6), Haliaeetus leucogaster 
(4), H. vocifer (4), H. leucocephalus (34), H. albicilla (3), H. pelagicus (3), Ichthyophaga nana (= 
humilis) (1), /. ichthyaetus (i),Busarellus nigricollis (7-of which the phalanges were unfused in 1 

I examined at least one skeleton of each of the following species of Accipitridae in which 
the phalanges were not fused. Aviceda cuculoides, Leptodon cqyanensis, Chondrohierax uncinatus, 
Henicopernis longicauda (phalanges dissected from alcoholic specimen), Pernis apivorus, 
Elanoides forficatus, Machaerhamphus alcinus, Gampsonyx swainsonii, Elanus leucurus, E. caeruleus, 
Chelictinia riocourii (phalanges taken from skin), Rostrhamus sociabilis, Harpagus bidentatus, 
Eophoictinia isura, Hamirostra melanosternon, Gypobierax angolensis, Neophron percnopierus, 
Gypaetus barbatus, Necrosyrtes monachus, Gyps bengalensis, G. africanus, G. rueppellii, 
G. himalayensis, G. fulvus, Torgos tracheliotus , Sarcogyps calvus, Aegypius monachus, Trigonoceps 
occipitalis, Circaetus gallicus, C. cinereus, Terathopius ecaudatus, Spilornis cheela, Polyboroides 
typus, Geranospi^a caerulescens, Circus cyaneus, C. cinereus, C. pygargus, C. melanoleucus , 
Melierax met abates, M. canorus, M. gabar, Accipiter gent His, A. melanoleucus, A. nisus, 
A. striatus, A. erythronemius, A. fasciatus, A. brevipes, A. badius, A. cooper ii, A. bicolor, 
Urotriorchis macrourus, Butastur indicus, Kaupifalco monogrammicus, Leucopternis melanops, 
L. albicollis, Buteogallus anthracinus, B. urubitinga, Heterospipas meridionalis, Geranoaetus 
melanoleucus, Parabuteo unicinctus, Buteo nitidus, B. magnirostris, B. ridgwayi, B. lineatus, B. 
platypterus, B. swainsonii, B. galapagoensis , B. albicaudatus ; B. polyosoma, B. poecilochrous, B. 
jamaicensis, B. buteo, B. lagopus, B. rufinus, B. hemilasius, B. regalis, B. auguralis, B. rufofuscus, 
Morphnus guianensis, Harpia harpy/a, Pithecophaga jefferyi , Ictinaetus malayensis (phalanges taken 
from skin), Aquila pomarina, A. rapax, A. wahlbergi, A. gurneyi, A. chrysaetos, A. audax, 
A. verreauxii, Hieraaetus fasciatus, Spi^astur melanoleucus, Lophoaetus occipitalis, Spi^aetus 

9 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: ioi(i)\ 

(cirrhatus) limnaeetus, S. nipalensis, S. tyrannus, S. orttatus, Stephanoaetus coronatus, Polemaetus 

There is also no fusion of phalanges in the Osprey Pandion haliaetus (Pandionidae). 

The only genera for which no specimens of phalanges were available were Dryotriorchis, 
Eutriorchis, Megatriorchis, Erythrotriorchis, Harpy haliaetus, Harpyopsis and Oroaetus. Of these, 
Megatriorchis and Erythrotriorchis have been suggested as being congeneric with Accipiter by 
Amadon (1978). None of the others has been suggested to be closely related to genera in 
which the phalanges are known to be fused. 


Shufeldt (1895) was the first to note the fused condition of the basal 
phalanges of digit II in the Accipitridae, reporting its occurrence in Ictinia 
mississippiensis and Haliaeetus leucocephalus. Friedmann (1950), doubtless 
following manuscript notes left by Ridgway, gave phalangeal fusion as a 
characteristic of his subfamily Milvinae or "true kites". Within the scope of 
that work, the only genera included in the Milvinae were Harpagus, Ictinia, 
and Rostrhamus. However, the phalanges are not fused in either Harpagus or 
Rostrhamus, whereas they are fused in Haliaeetus, a genus that Friedmann 
included in his Buteoninae. Brown & Amadon (1968: 20) essentially 
followed Friedmann and compounded the errors by stating that the fusion 
took place in the phalanges of the middle toe, rather than the inner toe, as is 
actually the case. The genera that they implied as possessing fused phalanges 
were Rostrhamus, Harpagus, Ictinia, Lophoictinia, Hamirostra, Milvus, and 
Haliastur, as well as the genera Haliaeetus and Ichthyophaga. Although Brown 
& Amadon did not employ formal designations for their subdivisions of the 
Accipitridae, they considered the first group of genera to be a subgroup of 
the "kites", whereas the last two genera were deemed to represent a different 
group, the "fish eagles". As seen in the list of materials above, 4 of the 
genera in their milvine subgroup of kites do not possess fused phalanges. 
In his treatment of morphology of the Falconiformes, Jollie (1977: 28) stated 
that "of the feet examined only those of Milvus, Ictinia, Haliaeetus, and 
Ichthyophaga showed fusion . . . The fusion in Haliaeetus may be incomplete 
with only the under surface involved, whereas the joint appears more or less 
normal above." These observations are correct as far as they go, the 
omissions being Haliastur and Busarellus. 

Deferring discussion of Busarellus (below), the genera that actually do have 
fused phalanges are all presently considered to be fairly closely related. The 
sequence Ictinia, Lophoictinia, Hamirostra, Milvus, Haliastur, Haliaeetus, and 
Ichthyophaga, used by Brown & Amadon (1968) and Morony et al. (1975), 
contains only 2 genera, Lophoictinia and Hamirostra, in which the phalanges 
are not fused. These 2 genera have been associated with the others only on 
very superficial similarities. For instance, Amadon (1978: 115) stated that 
Lophoictinia "looks much like a Milvus'" but at the same time he remarked 
that Hamirostra "is aberrant for a kite in its buteonine proportions" and that 
Lophoictinia and Hamirostra "probably represent some earlier incursion of 
milvine stock into Australia and are not particularly close to either Milvus or 
Haliastur". The absence of fused phalanges in Lophoictinia and Hamirostra 
suggests that better supporting evidence is needed before a relationship 
between these endemic Australian genera and the milvine kites can be 

[BulLBrit.Orn.Cl. 19 82: 102(1) ] 1 o 

Milvus and Haliastur appear to be closely related, having traditionally been 
separated only by minor features of external morphology (Amadon 1978). 
The "fish eagles" Haliaeetus and Ichthyophaga have long been considered to 
be related to Milvus and Haliastur (Ridgway 1873, Brown & Amadon 1968). 
Of the taxa with fused phalanges, Ictinia is the least like the others in appear- 
ance and habits, although no evidence seems to be available to ally it more 
closely with any other genus or group of genera. The fused condition of 
the phalanges is thus correlated neither with size nor with feeding habits, 
being found in small kites such as Ictinia as well as in some of the largest of 
the eagles, and in insectivorous, in scavenging, and in highly piscivorous 
species. Because the fusion of the phalanges may at times be confined to the 
ventral surface, it would appear that this is an adaptation to prevent hyper- 
extension at the base of the inner toe; but it is not clear why this would be of 
advantage to the particular species possessing this adaptation, as opposed to 
other raptors. 


An unexpected revelation in this study was the discovery of fused phalanges 
in the Black-collared Hawk or Fishing Buzzard Busarellus nigricollis. This dis- 
tinctive species ranges from southern Mexico, through much of South 
America and is specialized for catching fish, even to having prickly spicules 
on the soles of the feet in the manner of ospreys {Pandion). Brown & Amadon 
(1968: 565) express the current view of the relationships of this singular bird 
as follows : 

"A specialized member of the group of neotropical sub-buteonines which includes 
Heterospi^ias , Buteogallus and Parabuteo. 

Ridgway thought the genus was very isolated and related to the Australian kite 
(Hamirostra). We assume, however, that the resemblance to that genus is superficial and 
the resemblance to the neotropical genera just mentioned is real." 

From a review of the literature, it appears to me that much of the sequence 
of genera of New World Accipitridae now in use is derived from the early, 
preliminary work of Ridgway (1873, 1876, and other studies), with very 
little of substance having been added subsequently. In one of his first 
ventures at a classification of the diurnal raptors, Ridgway (1873) placed 
Busarellus (then known as Ichthyoborus) in his "group Haliaeti" along with 
Haliaeetus, Haliastur, and Milvus. Three years later, Ridgway (1876) placed 
Busartllus after Herpetotheres (a member of the Falconidae), Heterospi^ias, and 
Buteogallus, and before Harpia, Morphnus, and Gampsonyx (a kite related to 
ILlanus). It does not seem that Ridgway intended any particular degree of 
relationship to be implied by the sequence he used in this work. Although he 
characterized Busarellus as having the "general form and appearance of 
Buteogallus aequinoctialis" (Ridgway 1876: 142), this was evidently intended 
for descriptive purposes only. While noting some superficial similarities to 
Pandion, he went on to say that Busarellus "is much more nearly related to the 
heliaetine groups, especially to the remarkable Australian genus Gypoictinia 
\—Hamirostrd\, from which, however, it is widely distinct, as it is from all 
American genera". Thus, on 2 occasions Ridgway (1873, 1876) clearly stated 
that he thought Busarellus was related to Haliaeetus and its presumed allies. 
I believe that this is probably the last opinion on the matter to be founded 
on anything other than tradition. Other authors seem merely to have adopted 

1 1 [ 102(1) ] 

much of Ridgway's sequence in preference to his stated beliefs. Therefore, 
most subsequent works (e.g. Swann 1922, Peters 193 1, Hellmayr & Conover 
1949, Friedmann 1950, Brown & Amadon 1968) list Busarellus somewhere 
in the vicinity of Buteogallus. To my knowledge, no characters have been pub- 
lished to justify this arrangement. 

In plumage, Busarellus does not closely resemble any of the genera with 
which it is presently associated, but its white head streaked with dusky, 
overall chestnut coloration, and blackish remiges are reminiscent of the 
Brahminy Kite Haliastur Indus, on one hand, and Haliaeetus, particularly 
H. vocifer, on the other. It should be noted, however, that the transverse 
barring of the thighs and venter in juveniles of Busarellus are not found in 
Milvus, Haliastur, or Haliaeetus, and could be cited as being similar to such 
taxa as Buteogallus and Heterospi^ias. 

In the sequence Milvus-Haliastur-Haliaeetus-Ichthyophaga, there is an 
increasing affinity among the species for aquatic environments as well as an 
increasing dependence upon fish in the diet. Although the species of Buteogallus 
frequent swampy areas and prey largely or entirely on crabs, the highly 
specialized fish-catching behaviour of Busarellus seems more similar to that 
in some of the species of Haliaeetus. 

The strongest evidence for an association of Busarellus with the Milvus- 
Haliaeetus assemblage is the fusion of the phalanges of the inner toe, present 
in 6 of the 7 skeletons examined. The exceptional individual did not seem to 
be misidentified, nor was it clearly a juvenile bird. No variation was observed 
in this character in any of the other species that possess it, although no 
ontogenetic series was available by which to determine exactly when the 
fusion takes place during development. If the specimen of Busarellus with 
unfused phalanges is merely an abnormal individual, there is not sufficient 
material available to ascertain how frequently this abnormality occurs. 

It is probably safe to conclude that the species of Milvus, Haliastur, 
Haliaeetus and Ichthyophaga constitute a natural assemblage. Phalangeal 
fusion, plumage, and feeding habits suggest that Busarellus may belong with 
this assemblage, whereas phalangeal fusion appears to be the only character 
yet known to indicate that Ictinia also belongs with this group. Justification 
for putting Busarellus and Ictinia with the milvines requires confirmation by 
other characters, but the same is true of the placement of almost any of the 
genera of Accipitridae, a family in dire need of a comprehensive systematic 
revision that is thoroughly grounded in comparative anatomy of internal 
structures. It is hoped that knowing the true distribution of phalangeal 
fusion in the family will further this end. 

Acknowledgements: I am especially grateful to Ned K. Johnson, Lester L. Short, and 
Robert W. Storer for lending specimens that were crucial to this study. For useful comments 
on the manuscript I am indebted to Dean Amadon, Kenneth C. Parkes, and David W. 

References : 

Amadon, D. 1978. Remarks on the taxonomy of some Australasian raptors. Emu 78: 

Brown, L. & Amadon, D. 1968. Eagles, Hawks and Falcons of the World. 2 vols. New York: 

Friedmann, H. 1950. The birds of North and Middle America. Bull. U.S. Nat, Mus. 50, 

part XI: 1-793. 

[Bull.Brit.OKn.Cl.i982: 102(f)] 12 

Hellmayr, C. E. & Conover, H. B. 1949. Catalogue of birds of the Americas. Zoo/. Ser. 

Field Mus. Nat. Hist. 13, part 1, no. 4:1-358. 
Jollie, M. 1977. A contribution to the morphology and phylogeny of the Falconiformes. 

Part TV .Evolutionary Theory 3 : 1-143. 
Morony, J. J., Jr., Bock, W. J. & Farrand, J., Jr. 1975. Reference List of the Birds of the 

World. New York : American Museum of Natural History. 
Peters, J. L. 193 1. Check-list oj r Birds of 'the World. Vol. 1. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard 

University Press. 
Ridgway, R. 1873. Catalogue of the ornithological collection in the museum of the Society. 

II. Falconidae. Proc. Boston Soc. Nat. Hist. 16: 1-66. 
— 1876. Studies of the American Falconidae. Bull. U.S. Geol. Geogr. Surv. Territories 

2(2): 91-182. 
Shufeldt, R. W. 1895. Some comparative osteological notes on the North- American Kites. 

IbisSer. 6(3): 228-232. 
Swann, H. K. 1922. A Synopsis of the Accipitres {Diurnal Birds of Prey). London: Wheldon 

and Wesley. 

Address: Storrs L. Olson, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, 
Washington, D.C. 20560, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

A new subspecies of Serinus estherae (Carduelidae) 
from Sulawesi 

by K.-L. Schuchmann & H. E. Wolters 

Received 6 fune 1981 

The avifauna of Sulawesi, formerly known as Celebes, has been studied 
extensively by Stresemann (1939-1941, /. Orn. Vols. 87-89). Since his bio- 
geographical and systematic survey of the birds of this island, based on a 
collection gathered during an expedition by G. Heinrich from 1930 to 1932, 
little additional information on the birdlife of Sulawesi has come to our 

In August 1980, Mr. Christian Krause, one of our collectors, visited the 
southern ridge of Mt. Rantekombola, Sulawesi (3°23 'S, i2o°o2'E). His field 
headquarters was situated above treeline at an elevation of 2300 m, where the 
vegetation is dominated by extended grassland with scattered shrubs. Here he 
observed small flocks (up to 6 individuals) of Serinus estherae, a carduelid 
seedeater formerly unknown on the island. According to his observations 
S. estherae was restricted to open habitats between 2000 and 3000 m around 
Mt. Rantekombola. One specimen was collected and is now in the bird 
collection of the Zoologisches Forschungsintitut und Museum A. Koenig 
(ZFMK) in Bonn, FRG. It constitutes a new race: 

Serinus estherae renatae subsp. nov. 

Type: Adult, probably male; Mt. Rantekombola, Sulawesi, elevation 2300 m, 
6 August 1980; collected by Christian Krause. Reg. No. Zoologisches 
Forschungsinstitut und Museum Alexander Koenig, Bonn 81.563. 
Diagnosis: S. e. renatae differs mainly from all other subspecies of S. estherae 
by its heavier and wider, cone-shaped beak (see Fig. 1 and Table 1). Otherwise 
it is similar to S. e. vanderbilti de Schauensee (of which S. e. ripleyi Chasen is a 


[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: I02(l)] 

synonym): forehead yellow, back dark greyish brown, the head being 
somewhat lighter greyish brown, the malar region with only the slightest 
indication of a yellow wash; rump golden yellow, upper tail coverts dark, 
edged with golden yellow; upper wing coverts and secondaries dark with 
narrow yellow tips ; belly whitish, without the brown centres to the feathers 
that are apparent on the breast. 

(b) (d) 

Fig. 1. (a) Serinus estherae renatae (note shape of beak), (b) S. e. orientalis, (c) S. e. vanderbilti, 
(d) S. e. estherae. 

Table i 
Mensural characteristics (mm) of Serinus estherae subspecies 











$ ? ° 



(n= 4 ) 

(n= 4 ) 



70 72 69-70 







9 7 7 







6.5 6.5 6.5-7 



(n= 4 ) 

(n= 4 ) 



39 45 45-46 




(n=. 4 ) 


J 3 

12 12 11-12 


Notes: Measurements are those of one specimen unless otherwise indicated. 

Measurements: see Table 1 . 

Range: Known only from the type locality. 

Specimens examined: 

Serinus estherae vanderbilti de Schauensee: 6% type of S. e. ripleji Chasen, 
Mt. Leuser, N. Sumatra; Mus. Leiden 14057. 

Serinus estherae estherae (Finsch): 4 S3 (incl. type), 4 ??, Mt. Pangerango, 
W. Java; Mus. Leiden 44668, 44691, 44710, 44716, 44657, 44703, 44704, 
4471 1. 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i982: I02(l)] 14 

Serinus estherae orientalis Chasen: <? (type), <J, Tengger Mts, E. Java; 
Mus. Leiden 14058. 

Serinus {estherae) mindanensis Ripley & Rabor :i^,i $,2 unsexed (probably 
?$), Mt. Katanglad, Mindanao, Philippines; Mus. Koenig, Bonn, 1966. 
468, 1966. 469, 1966. 470, 1966. 471. 

Etymology: We name this new carduelid for our colleague Dr. Renate van 
den Elzen in recognition of her work on the ethology of Serinus and its 
allied genera. 

Remarks: Serinus estherae renatae from Sulawesi fills the geographical gap 
between the western members of the estherae group and S. mindanensis, 
originally regarded as a distinct species, but now usually treated as a sub- 
species of S. estherae. Even in its morphological characters, most obvious in 
the shape of its bill, S. e. renatae fits into a clinal gradation within the Serinus 
estherae superspecies. 

Acknowledgements: We are especially indebted to Christian Krause who discovered S. 
estherae renatae in Sulawesi and to Dr. Mees, Museum Leiden, for sending skins for com- 

Address: Dr. Karl-L. Schuchmann and Dr. Hans E. Wolters, Zoologisches Forschungsinstitut 
und Museum A. Koenig, Adenauerallee 1 50-164, 5 300 Bonn 1 , FRG. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

Speckled Wood Pigeon Columba hodgsonii and 

Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca, two new species 

for Thailand 

by Philip D. Round 

Received 18 June ip8i 

During fieldwork on Doi Inthanon, Chiangmai Province, NW Thailand in 
December 1980 the author, in company with other ornithologists, made 
single sightings of both Speckled Wood Pigeon Columba hodgsonii and Lesser 
Whitethroat Sylvia curruca. Details are also given of a subsequent sighting of 
Lesser Whitethroat made by W. E. Fletcher. 

speckled wood pigeon Columba hodgsonii. 

On 16 December a flock of about 80 pigeons was seen in treetops by the 
roadside in an area of evergreen cloud forest at an elevation of about 2200 m. 
While perched, they were observed from a stationary vehicle by R. Dobias, 
D. S. Melville, G. C. Yong and the author at a range of 30-40 m. After 
about 2 minutes, they flew off down a steep forested slope and were lost 
from view. It was immediately recognised that the birds were of a species 
not previously recorded for Thailand, but they were not conclusively 
identified until reference had been made to King et al. (1975) and Ali (1977). 
Although rather heavily-built, the birds were noticeably smaller and more 
pointed-winged than Mountain Imperial Pigeon Ducula badia which was 

1 5 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.19 82: 102(1) ] 

seen fairly regularly on Doi Inthanon. The upperparts appeared very dark, 
either maroon or chocolate-coloured and showed profuse white speckling 
on the wing coverts. The tail was entirely blackish without any suggestion 
of paler tips or margins. The head and neck were paler than the rest of the 
upperparts, appearing greyish, though with prominent dark streaks on the 
sides of the neck. The colour of the underparts was not specifically noted 
though these were slightly paler than the upperparts. Fine white speckling 
was also evident on the flanks. 

Although we drove along the same road at least twice daily during the 
next 4 days, the birds were not seen subsequently. The Speckled Wood 
Pigeon is known from the Western Himalayas through to Burma and 
Western China (Szechuan, Kansu and Yunnan). Although mainly resident, it 
is subject to seasonal nomadic movements depending on food supply (Ali 
op. fit., Ali & Ripley (3) 1969, Cheng 1976). 


On 29 December, M. Rowbottom, S. Webb and the author found a Lesser 
Whitethroat in an extensive deforested area, dominated by low, woody 
herbage and scrub with a few scattered trees, at an elevation of about 1 300 m. 
First located in the crown of a small tree, the bird then flew into low bushes 
and was observed at ranges down to 20 m intermittently for about 2 minutes 
before contact was lost. It was a medium size warbler with a moderate to 
long, square-ended tail, a rather stout bill and thick tarsi. The head was dark 
grey, with the ear coverts slightly darker than the crown, the back and 
wings a dull grey-brown. The tail was dark grey or blackish, with white 
outer tail feathers which were seen in flight only. The throat was white and 
contrasted very sharply with the dark ear coverts. The remainder of the 
underparts were also whitish, suffused with dull greyish-buff on the breast 
and flanks. The eye, bill and tarsi all appeared dark. The bird was seen to 
wag its tail downwards very slightly on a few occasions. The call note was a 
soft tac repeated at frequent intervals. 

A further sighting of Lesser Whitethroat has since been made on Doi 
Inthanon, in an area of deciduous woodland, secondary growth and scrub 
at c. 400 m on 4 March 198 1 (W. E. Fletcher in lift.). The bird was sketched. 

All observers involved are highly familiar with Lesser Whitethroats in 
Europe. The only other similarly-marked species in the area was Grey- 
breasted Prinia Prima hodgsonii, which by comparison was much smaller, 
longer-tailed and finer billed, with quite different actions and behaviour. 

These appear to be the first records of Lesser Whitethroat for SE Asia. 
Both sightings were probably referable to the race S. c. blythi which breeds 
in Central Siberia from Lake Baikal to the Ob River and which is a common 
and widespread winter visitor to the Indian subcontinent (Ali & Ripley (8) 
1973). The plumage characters of blythi are closer to those of the nominate 
S. c. curruca which breeds in Europe and from which the Inthanon birds did 
not appear to differ, than are those of either S. c. minula or S. c. althaea, both 
of which also winter in India. 

Acknowledgements: The author, R. Dobias, D. S. Melville and G. C. Yong were members 
of an expedition which was coordinated by Dr. Boonsong Lekagul and funded by the 
Smithsonian Institution. The author is also grateful to Dr. Boonsong for his subsequent 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: I02(l)] 16 

and continuing advice and support, to D. Goodwin and D. S. Melville for their comments 
on this manuscript and to W. E. Fletcher for permission to include details of his sighting 
of a Lesser Whitethroat. 

References : 

Ali, S. 1977. The Birds of the Eastern Himalayas. New Delhi : Oxford University Press. 

Ali, S. & Ripley, S. D. 1 968-1 974. Handbook of the Birds of India and Pakistan. 10 vols. 

Bombay: Oxford University Press. 
Cheng, Tso-Hsin. 1976. Distributional List of Chinese Birds. Peking: Science Press. 
King, B. F., Dickinson, E. C. & Woodcock, M. W. 1975. A Field Guide to the Birds of 

South-Bast Asia. London : Collins. 

Address: Philip D. Round, Association for the Conservation of Wildlife, 4 Old Custom 
House Lane, Bangkok 5 , Thailand. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

The introduction and subspecies of the Rose-ringed 
Parakeet Psittacula krameri in Egypt 

by Steven M. Goodman 

Received 16 July 19 81 

The Rose-ringed Parakeet Psittacula krameri has been introduced in various 
portions of the world including North America (Bull & Ricciuti 1974), the 
Middle East (Hue & Etchecopar 1970) and certain localities in southern and 
eastern Africa (Clancey 1980, Britton 1980). Although not indigenous to 
Egypt, the species became established there in the early 1 900*5 as a nesting 
bird in the Giza Zoological Gardens (Flower & Nicoll 1908, Nicoll 191 2). 
Between 1901 and 1908, several captive birds held within the 200 escaped 
and are presumed to be the original stock of the extant local population, 
which later spread to the environs of Giza and Cairo. However, this was not 
the first modern introduction into Egypt, for in the United States National 
Museum (USNM) there is a 6" specimen (152788) collected on 19 December 
1895, at Helwan. Because the specimen shows no signs of being a cage bird 
(e.g. no excessive feather wear, no rings, etc.), it is presumed that it was free 

The feral population within the zoo grounds quickly adapted to the local 
conditions and apparently became such a pest that between 191 6 and 1919 
127 birds were killed (Flower 1933). Meinertzhagen (1930) reported them 
well established in the Giza area, and some occasionally wandered to 
Helwan and the Delta Barrage. Haensel (1975), found about 50 individuals 
living wild on the zoo grounds in the fall of 197 1. In January-February 1979 
(with Mr. Patrick H. Houlihan) and in late April-May 1981 I observed 
flocks of 35 and 40 birds (respectively) on the zoo grounds. Sutton (1945) 
did not report the bird in the nearby Gezira Sporting Club, Zamalek (about 
4 kms from the Giza Zoological Gardens), but, by the spring of 198 1 it had 
found suitable refuge there as a breeding resident, and flocks of up to 15 
could be seen (pers. obs.). The Rose-ringed Parakeet's recent feral distri- 
bution in Egypt, however, is not just confined to the general Giza-Cairo 
area. In the USNM there is a $ specimen (5 5 1 1 17) collected on 14 April 1971 


[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 19 82: 102(1) ] 

at Bahig (30 km southwest of Alexandria and 190 km northwest of Giza). 
Because of the distance between Giza and Bahig, it is most likely that its 
introduction at these localities are independent of one another. 

The identification of the subspecies introduced into Egypt has remained 
somewhat of a problem. Meinertzhagen (1930) tentatively assigned it to 
manillensis, but subsequently (1954) altered this identification and claimed it 
was borealis that was introduced. Hachisuka (1924) considered the bird 
referable to layardi [= manillensis] based on a specimen collected at Giza. 
Vaurie (1965) identified it as borealis. 

Table i 

Comparison of the measurements of Egyptian Rose-ringed Parakeets Psittacula krameri 
collected at Giza between 19 10 and 19 17 with the 4 extant subspecies. 

Egyptian specimens 

Wing (mm) 

i64-i74(i67.o) 1 



Tail (mm) 

202-225 (216.0) 



Culmen (mm) 

(n= 9 ) 


manillensis 2 






<j(n= 9 ) 


226-253 (239-2) 

22-25 (23.2) 





parvirostris 2 




krameri 2 

<? (11=12) 





Notes : 1 Range and mean (in parentheses). 

= Measurements of subspecies after Forshaw(i978). 

The Asian subspecies borealis and manillensis, the forms most commonly 
introduced around the world, differ from the native sub-Saharan subspecies, 
krameri and parvirostris, by being larger (Table 1) and the males having more 
distinct facial and collar markings (Forshaw 1978). Based on these characters 
all the Egyptian birds examined are referable to the Asian forms. The Asian 
subspecies are best separated from one another by bill colour; with manillensis 
having red upper and wholly black lower mandibles, and borealis having a 
red bill that is sometimes marked on the lower mandible with some black 
(Ali & Ripley 1969). The postmortem colour change of the bill is not very 
pronounced, and the differentiation between the black and red portions 
remains distinct in museum specimens. Of the 20 adult specimens examined 
which were collected at the Giza Zoo between 19 10 and 191 7, 19 had 
completely red upper and black lower mandibles, and only 1 had red upper 
and pied red and black lower mandibles. Thus, according to these characters 
the birds introduced at Giza belonged to manillensis. Further, the specimen 
from Bahig is also referable to manillensis. It is plausible that other subspecies 
have been introduced into Egypt, as identified by other workers, but none 
of their specimens was available for this review. 

{Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: I02(l)] 18 

Acknowledgements: I wish to thank Drs. George E. Watson (United States National 
Museum) and Mohamed Amir and Mohamed Abdel Raheim (Giza Zoological Gardens) 
for allowing me access to specimens in their care. I gratefully acknowledge a grant from the 
Frank M. Chapman Memorial Fund. Jenifer Daniels, Mrs. Rita Goodman, G. A. Smith 
and Dr. Robert W. Storer commented on the manuscript and offered worthwhile 

References : 

Ali, S. & Ripley, S. D. 1969. Handbook of the Birds of India and Pakistan. Vol. 3. Bombay: 

Oxford University Press. 
Britton, P. L. (ed.) 1980. Birds of East Africa. Nairobi : East Africa Nat. Hist. Soc. 
Bull, J. & Ricciuti, E. R. 1974. Polly want an apple ? Audubon 76(3) : 48-54. 
Clancey, P. A. (ed.) 1980. S.A.O.S. Checklist of Southern African Birds. Johannesburg: 

Southern African Orn. Soc. 
Flower, S. S. 1933. Notes on some birds in Egypt. Ibis Ser. 1 3(3) : 34-46. 
Flower, S. S. & Nicoll, M. J. 1908. Wild Birds of the Gi^a Gardens 189 8-1908. Cairo: 

Government of Egypt. 
Forshaw, J. M. 1978. Parrots of the World. 2nd edition. Newton Abbot: David & Charles. 
Hachisuka, M. U. 1924. Notes on some birds from Egypt. Ibis Ser. 1 1(6) : 771-773. 
Haensel, J. 1975. Ornithologische Eindriicke wahrend eines Studienaufenthalts in Agypten 

im Herbst jyji.Beitr. Vogelkd. 21 : 312-322. 
Hue, F. & Etchecopar, R. D. 1970. Les Oiseaux du Proche et du Moyen Orient. Paris: N. 

Meinertzhagen, R. 1930. NicoWs Birds of Egypt. Vol. 1. London: Hugh Rees Ltd. 

— 1954. Birds of Arabia. Edinburgh : Oliver & Boyd. 
Nicoll, M. J. 1912. Wild Birds of the Gi%a Gardens, 1898-1911. Cairo: Government of 

Sutton, L. J. 1945. Observation of birds at Gezira Sporting Club. Bull. Zool. Soc. Egypt 7: 

Vaurie, C. 1965. The Birds of the Palearctic Fauna. Non-Passer if or mes. London: H. F. & G. 

Address: Steven M. Goodman, Bird Division, Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, 
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

The White-bellied Swiftlet Collocalia esculenta from Java 

by S. Somadikarta 

Received 12 July 1981 

In 1848 (p. 369), Streubel gave a name to a swift from Java, Hemiprocne 
fucivora. The type of this species (ZMB No. 8390, Temminck, Java, sex not 
indicated) is not a Grey-rumped Treeswift Hemiprocne longipennis (see Brooke 
1969) as had been supposed, but is a very typical White-bellied Swiftlet 
Collocalia esculenta linchi from Java. It is glossy green, the hindtoe is naked, 
without white spots on the under part of the tail feathers. The measurements 
(in mm) of the wing, the tail, the exposed culmen, and the tarsus of this 
specimen are 87.0 (the ninth primary in moult, score: 2 — see Newton 1966) 
34.0, 4.0, and 9.0 respectively. These suggest that Collocalia fucivora (Streubel 
1848) is a senior synonym of Collocalia linchi Horsfield & Moore 1854 (a 
paper on the identity of C. linchi is in preparation). 

Streubel's name, however, has appeared only once since it was published. 
Gray (1866: 119) doubtfully listed Hemiprocne fucivora Streubel as a synonym 

19 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.19S2: 102(1)] 

of Collocalia linchi Horsfield & Moore ; he was suspicious about the accuracy 
of the description of the bird given by Streubel. Gray (1866: 127) pointed 
out that "some parts of the description that he gives, however, of his 
salangana [which he implies is equal to the H. esculenta of Linnaeus] conveys a 
doubt as to the bird described by him being really a Collocalia . . .". Although 
Gray doubted the accuracy of StreubePs description, he had apparently not 
examined the type of fucivora. Accordingly, Collocalia fucivora (Streubel) may 
be regarded as an unused senior synonym (see Article 23b, Int. Code Zool. 
Nomencl. 1964). 

Warren (1966: 164) assigned the adult swiftlet specimen 1 880.1. 1.4649, 
ex Coll. Ind. Mus., collected by Horsfield from Java as a syntype of 
Collocalia linchi Horsfield & Moore 1854. This specimen, however, is not a 
typical White-bellied Swiftlet from Java. It is glossy blue, without white 
spots on the under part of the tail feathers and the feather tuft on the hindtoe 
is apparently worn off. The measurements (in mm) of the wing and the tail 
are 95.5 (the 8th primary in moult, score: 3 — see Newton 1966), and 37.5 
respectively. The bill is partly broken and the tarsus is difficult to measure. 
This specimen might belong to C. e. affinis, and was most probably collected 
in the Andamans or the Nicobar Islands. 

Warren (1966: 164) noted further that there are several other syntypes of 
C. linchi in the collection of the BMNH. It should be noted, however, that 
only 2 specimens are mentioned in the original description of Collocalia 
linchi Horsfield & Moore 1854, namely: "A. adult, B. young and nest. Java, 
From Dr. Horsfield's Collection". In the collection of the BMNH there is 
only one typical adult White-bellied Swiftlet specimen from Java bearing 
labels similar to those of 18 80.1. 1.4649. It is registered as 80.1. 1.46 19, and 
designated as "cotype of Collocalia linchi". A young specimen bearing labels 
similar to those of the specimens 18 80.1. 1.4649 and 4619 could not be 
located in the collection. 

Consequently, the specimen 18 80.1. 1.4649 listed by Warren (1966: 164) 
as a syntype of C. linchi must have been wrongly labelled ; this number being 
most likely that of the unlocated young White-bellied Swiftlet specimen 
collected by Horsfield from Java. The adult specimen 80.1. 1.46 19, ex Coll. 
Ind. Mus., collected by Horsfield from Java (sex not indicated) is here 
designated as the lectotype of Collocalia linchi Horsfield & Moore 1854. The 
measurements (in mm) of the wing, the tail, and the exposed culmen are 
94.0, 41.0, and 3.5 respectively; the tarsus is difficult to measure. 

Acknowledgements: I am indebted to Mr. I. C. J. Galbraith of the British Museum (Natural 
History) and to Dr. G. Mauersberger of the Zoologisches Museum, Berlin who kindly 
allowed me to examine specimens in the collections in their charge. I am also obliged to 
Mr. C. W. Benson of the University of Cambridge and to Dr. M. R. Wilson of the University 
College, Cardiff, for critically reading the draft and suggesting improvements. A generous 
grant from The British Council is gratefully acknowledged. Research on the taxonomy of 
the swiftlets has been partially carried out during my tenure as National Research Council 
Visiting Research Associate at the Division of Birds of the Smithsonian Institution, 
Washinton, D.C. 

References : 

Brooke, R. K. 1969. Hemiprocne coronata is a good species. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 89 : 168-169. 
Gray, G. R. 1866. A synopsis of the species of the genus Collocalia with description of new 
species. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. Ser. 3(17): 1 18-128. 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i9S2: I02(l)] 20 

Horsfield, T. & Moore, F. 1854. Genus Collocalia. (In) A Catalogue of the Birds in the Museum 
of the Hon. East-India Company. Vol. 1 : 98-106. W. H. Allen: London. 

Newton, I. 1966. The moult of the Bullfinch Pyrrhula pyrrhula. Ibis 108 : 41-67. 

Streubel, A. B. 1848. Die Cypseliden des Berliner Museums. IsisvonOken: 348-373. 

Warren, R. L. M. 1966. Type Specimens of the Birds in the British Museum {Natural History). 
Vol. 1. Non-Passerines. Trustees of the British Museum (Natural History). 

Address: Dr. S. Somadikarta, Museum Zoologicum Bogoriense, Bogor, Indonesia. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

Notes on the nesting behaviour of 
Acrocephalus aequinoctialis 

by Sharon L. Milder & Ralph W. Schreiber 

Revised 12 fuly 19 81 

The Bokikokiko, or Christmas Island Warbler, Acrocephalus aequinoctialis is 
endemic to the Line Islands and the papers by Gallagher (i960), Clapp & 
King (1975) and Schreiber (1979) are the only published sources of infor- 
mation on this species. While on Christmas Island (2°N, i57°W), central 
Pacific Ocean, between 12 and 21 July 1980 we recorded observations on 
nestling behaviour, behaviour of adults while feeding, and flight and prey 
capture by adults of this species. 

On 12 July 1980 Milder discovered a nest containing four nestlings 
estimated as 5-7 days old. The nest was located c. 2 m off the ground on the 
mainland side of a 5 m tall Beach Heliotrope Messerschmidia argentea on the 
beach crest. Finding the nest was easy because the young called frequently 
when left alone by the parents, and the duration, intensity, and volume of 
calling increased when parents arrived at the nest. Both parents fed the young, 
and the nest was visited on an average of once every 2.5 minutes during the 
6.5 hours of observation (Figure 1) during 9 days which covered all times of 


00 15 - 



"- 10 - 




1 , — j — j — j — j — j — j — j — j — j — j—j — r 

6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 M 15 16 17 18 19 


Fig. 1. Number of feedings per half hour by adult Acrophalus aequinoctialis. Sunrise (06.30), 
sunset (18.30). 

21 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i9S2: I02(l)] 

day. This feeding rate is similar to that recorded for continental nesting 
passerines of similar size (Pringle 1977, Henry 1977, Skutch i960). Faecal 
sacs were carried away from the nests by adults and none was observed being 

Although lizard tails (geckos, Lepidodactylus lugubris and Hemidactylus 
frenatus) were also fed to the young (Schreiber 1979), the main food item we 
noted brought to nestlings was houseflies {Musca domestica). This nest was 
located about 100 m from a garbage dump where flies were present in large 
numbers. Bokikokiko adults flew to the dump and caught flies by running- 
hopping after them. After catching 1-3 flies (n=io observations) the adult 
would return to the nest and feed one or more young. The parent birds 
called frequently. On 20 July a feral domestic cat was at the dump when an 
adult came to feed. A loud call was given by the mate from a bush next to 
the dump and the feeding bird flew from the dump to the bush and landed 
near its mate and both called loudly. 

On the afternoon of 17 July, 4 nestlings were present; on the next 
morning only 2 remained ; one more departed that afternoon, and all 4 chicks 
were in the bush within 2 m of their nest on 19th and 20th. On 18th we 
approached closely and one of the chicks fell to the ground. It hopped with 
apparent dexterity from twig to twig until it had climbed to near the nest. 
The parents continued to feed their chicks after all were out of the nest. 
Four days after fledging, the young continued to hop about the bush. We 
observed no flying and no feeding on their own at this stage, but they hopped 
from twig to twig and fluttered for short distances (maximum 20 cm) 
between twigs. Nestlings stretched legs and wings, and preened, but we 
never observed "practice flying". 

Flight of the adults, as noted by Gallagher (i960), is not strong and was 
mostly level or on a descending glide, with intermittent shallow, laboured 
wing beats. When the parents returned to the nest-bush they flew into the 
bush at a height of c. 1 m, then hopped from branch to branch up to the 
nest. On leaving the nest they would hop to the upper portions of the bush 
and take flight. We never saw an adult in level flight above 3 m from the 
ground and in fact, level flight was unusual and only over short distances 
(20-30 m). Flight higher and longer than that usually involved descent from 
the upper portions of a bush. 

Insufficient data exist at present to determine a breeding season for this 
species on Christmas Island. However, in July 1980, in the 20 hectares 
surrounding the Captain Cook Hotel we located 6 pairs of birds, all of which 
seemed to be maintaining territories, pair members remaining in close 
communication with each other. We could find these pairs consistently in 
certain locations but did not observe any interterritorial behaviour. No 
other nests were found and the nest we observed was the only one that 
could have had a garbage dump inside its territory. Perhaps this food source 
allowed this particular nesting in June-July. Future observations will be 
needed to determine if these birds maintain permanent territories, what type 
of pair bond is maintained, how dispersal is effected, and what controls the 
timing of their breeding season. 

On 17 July we mist-netted one adult at 18.00 hrs. It weighed 19.0 g, the 
exposed culmen measured 15 mm, the tarsus 30 mm, and unflattened wing 
chord 70 mm. 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: I02(l)] ZZ 

The prime factors limiting the population of this island dwelling bird are 
its food supply and the nest sites. The introduced cats and rats do not appear 
to be a factor and no competing passerine is present. Christmas Island 
Warblers apparently nest only in Messerschmidia argentea, which has branches 
extending to the ground, probably because it enables hopping easily from 
the low branches to the top of the tree. Nest site availability is probably, 
however, not a problem for the warbler, since the bushes are abundant on 
the island, though mature bushes of the proper configuration may be limited. 
An increase in garbage dumps, with its attendant growth of fly populations, 
will be beneficial in the short term to the species; but with the increasing 
human population, this fascinating island species will undoubtedly suffer in 
the long run. 

We have made a small step toward elucidating the biology of this isolated 
species. Clearly, further studies on all aspects of its biology are needed to 
further understanding of the effects of isolation and the lack of native 
predators and competitors on its behaviour. Additionally, studies of its 
anatomy and flight capability are needed and the time to worry about its 
population size is now. 

Acknowledgements: Elizabeth Anne Schreiber was most helpful in all ways during this 
study, Andrea Kaufman assisted in photography, Robert Bezy identified the lizards, and 
Thomas R. Howell made valuable comments on the ms. 

References : 

Clapp, R. B. & King, W. B. 1975. Status of the Kokikokiko Acrocephalus aequinoctialis. 

Bull. Brit. Orn. Cl.9y.z-5. 
Gallagher, M. D. i960. Bird notes from Christmas Island, Pacific Ocean. Ibis 102: 489-502. 
Henry, C. 1977. Nourrisage des jeunes chez la rousserolle effarvatte. Gerfauht 67 : 369-394. 
Pringle, J. S. 1977. Breeding of Knysna Scrub Warbler. Ostrich 48 : 1 12-1 14. 
Schreiber, R. W. 1979. The egg and nest of the Bokikokiko Acrocephalus aequinoctialis. Bull. 

Brit. Orn. CI. 99 : 1 20-1 24. 
Skutch, A. i960. Life histories of Central American birds, II. Pacific Coast Avifauna No. 34. 

Address: S. L. Milder and R. W. Schreiber, Natural History Museum, 900 Exposition 
Blvd., Los Angeles, California 90007, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

First sight record of the Spotted Dove 

Streptopelia chinensis from Luzon and a summary of its 

range expansion in the Philippines 

by G. P. Waldbauer & Susan M. Waldbauer 

Received 2) July 19 Si 

The rapid range expansion of the Spotted Dove Streptopelia chinensis in the 
Philippines was discussed by Rabor (1959), duPont & Rabor (1973a, b) and 
Parkes (1973). DuPont & Rabor (1973b) offered the most detailed account 
but did not cite published records of the distribution of this species. 

Since about the third decade of this century S. chinensis has been moving 
north and east through the Philippines from its original footholds on the 

23 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: 102(f)] 

islands of Balabac and Palawan. Although S. chinensis was only recently 
reported from the Sulu Archipelago (see below), duPont & Rabor (1973b) 
believed that there was also a northeastward movement, presumably from 
Borneo, via the Sulu Archipelago to the Zamboanga Peninsula of Mindanao. 

By 1 971 S. chinensis was known from most of the major Philippine islands 
south of Luzon. DuPont & Rabor (1973b) reported that in many localities 
S. chinensis was in the process of pre-empting the habitat originally occupied 
by the Philippine turtle dove, S. bitorquata. In some areas of Cebu, Mindanao 
and Negros, populations of both species could still be found together, but in 
many other areas S. chinensis had displaced S. hiotorquata in lowland open 
country near human settlements, the habitat favoured by both species and 
occupied predominantly by S. hiotorquata only 1 5 years earlier. 

S. chinensis has been previously reported from the following Philippine 
islands: Balabac and a questionable report from Palawan (Worcester & 
Bourns 1898); Basilan (Kuroda 1927); Palawan (Hachisuka 1932); Busuanga 
(Manuel 1937); Mindanao (Rabor 1952); Negros (Rabor 1954 — cited by 
Rabor 1959); Cebu (Rabor 1959); Leyte (duPont 1971; see Parkes 1973); 
Bongao, Sanga Sanga and Tawitawi of the Sulu Archipelago (duPont & 
Rabor 1973a); Dinagatand Siargao (duPont & Rabor 1973b). 

On 3 occasions we saw S. chinensis on the experimental farm of the Inter- 
national Rice Research Institute on the island of Luzon near Los Banos, 
Laguna, Republic of the Philippines. The Institute is about 70 km southeast 
of Manila and just south of Laguna de Bay, a large lake. The observations 
noted below were made through 8 x binoculars. We are confident of our 
identification because we had become aquainted with this species only 3 
months earlier on the island of Hawaii, where it has been introduced. 

On 3 September 1978 we watched a S. chinensis for about 15 minutes and 
from a distance of about 40 m as it carried nesting material to the head of a 
tall coconut palm. There may actually have been 2 doves making alternate 
trips, but there was no way of confirming this. On 30 September 1978 we 
saw a flock of 5 feeding on the ground, and on 3 October 1978 we saw one 
individual on the ground. S. chinensis was never abundant during our stay at 
the Institute from June 1978 to July 1979. 

Acknowledgement: We thank Edward C. Dickinson for acquainting us with the literature 
on the distribution of S. chinensis in the Philippines. 

References : 

duPont, J. E. 1 97 1. Philippine Birds. Delaware Museum of Natural History: Greenville. 

479 PP- 
duPont, J. E. & Rabor, D. S. 1973a. South Sulu Archipelago birds, an expedition report. 

Nemouria y: 1-63. 
— — 1973b. Birds of Dinagat and Siargao, Philippines. Nemouria 10: i-m. 
Hachisuka, M. 1932. The Birds of the Philippine Islands, with Notes on the Mammal Fauna. 

Vol. I (2) : 169-439. H. F. and G. Witherby : London. 
Kuroda, N. 1927. On a collection of birds from the island of Basilan, southern Philippines. 

Tori (Bull. Ornith. Soc. Japan) 5 : 199-261. 
Manuel, C. G. 1937. A review of Philippine pigeons, V, subfamilies Columbinae, 

Geopeliinae, Phabinae and Caloenadinae. Philippine J. Sci. 63 : 175-184. 
Parkes, K. C. 1973. Annotated lists of the birds of Leyte Island, Philippines. Nemouria 11 : 


[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. ip 82: 102(1)} 24 

Rabor, D. S. 1952. Distributional notes on some Philippine birds. Auk 69: 253-257. 

— 1959- The impact of deforestation on birds of Cebu, Philippines, with new records 

for that island. Auk 76 : 37-43. 
Worcester, D. C. & Bourns, F. S. 1898. Contributions to Philippine ornithology. Part I. 

Proc. U.S. Nat. Mus. 20: 549-566. 

Address: G. P. Waldbauer and Susan M. Waldbauer, Department of Entomology, 320 
Morrill Hall, University of Illinois, 505 S. Goodwin, Urbana, IL 61 801, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

Swamp-dwelling weavers of the Ploceus velatusjvitellinus 
complex, with the description of a new species 

by M. Louette and C. W. Benson 

Received 27 July 19 81 

In this paper we use the generic name Ploceus in the broad sense of, e.g. 
White (1963) and Hall & Moreau (1970). White (pp. 133-134) uses the single 
specific name velatus for the above complex, and briefly but usefully defines 
subspecific differences. Hall & Moreau (p. 284) divide velatus into 2 groups, 
a southern velatus and a northern vitellinus \ the northernmost form of the 
former being P. velatus reichardi, of southwestern Tanzania. This form is 
above all distinctive in that the male in breeding dress has the yellow of the 
breast and flanks heavily overlaid with chestnut. The fore part of the crown 
is relatively extensively chestnut (as in the vitellinus rather than the velatus 
group), while the greens and yellows of the plumage as a whole are unusually 
bright. The vitellinus group as recognised by Hall & Moreau is associated 
with dry woodlands and savannas. So too through most of its range is the 
velatus group, but with some notable exceptions in the northeast of its 

The form reichardi seems to be typically associated with swamps, perhaps 
entirely so in the breeding season (in the rains) : a point that is not mentioned 
by Britton (1980). It seems also to be often markedly colonial in its nesting 
(Bohm 1885: 70, as Hyphantornis vitellinus; Vesey-FitzGerald 1956, Beesley 
1956), Beesley mentioning colonies varying in numbers from 4 to 150. 
Vesey-FitzGerald & Beesley (i960: 108) do also record its occurrence in 
woodland, but as in the following form this may merely represent off-season 

The form katangae, of northeastern Zambia northward from Lake 
Bangweulu, and in adjacent Zaire by the River Luapula and Lake Mweru, 
and at Musosa (Benson et al. 1971, Schouteden 1971: 220), is likewise 
essentially a swamp-dweller. Ecologically it contrasts strikingly with 
nominate velatus (or according to Clancey 1974: 76, she ; leyi), probably 
essentially confined as a breeder to dry Acacia woodland. Yet the 2 forms, 
of which katangae is very markedly the smaller (with no overlap, sex by sex, 
in wing-length), occur within 100 miles (160 km) of one another. Although 
Aspinwall (1974: 1 1) and Taylor (1977: 5 5) do give records of katangae from 
dry ground away from swamps, like reichardi it seems to be virtually confined 

2 5 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: I02(l)] 

to swamps when breeding. Benson & Pitman (1956: 40) give some infor- 
mation on breeding. It may be that katangae, unlike reichardi, never breeds in 
large colonies of 150 nests. Apart from swamps, these authors {pp. cit.: 8) do 
also record it as nesting in bushes on dry ground on Katema Island, but this 
island is near the eastern shore of the shallow, muddy Lake Mweru-wa-Ntipa, 
and only c. \ mile (400 m) in circumference. 

Another likely swamp associate is the form upembae, known from Kadia, 
8°i6'S, z6°3 5 'E, and Mabwe, 8°42'S, z6°28'E, in the Upemba National Park, 
southeastern Zaire. The co-ordinates for both these localities are from 
Chapin (1954: 671, 695), and indicate that they are respectively near the 
eastern extremity of Lake Kisale and on the east shore of Lake Upemba. 
Schouteden (1971: 221) cites both localities, and Verheyen (1953: 612) 
Mabwe, but neither author gives any information about the habitat. There is 
also a female from Bukama, 9°io'S, 25°5o'E, in the Koninklijk Museum 
voor Midden- Afrika (KMMA). White (1963: 134) indicates unequivocally 
that upembae is a swamp associate, and there is a strong presumption that this 
is correct, if only from the situations of Kadia and Mabwe. According to 
Verheyen {pp. cit.), upembae is a solitary nester. 

Benson & Pitman (1956: 40) liken the nest of katangae (unspouted, 
entrance downwardly directed) to that of tahatali (= nominate velatus in 
Benson et al. 1971 ; shelleji in Clancey 1974: 76). Indeed, all the forms in the 
velatusjvitellinus complex seem to have this type of nest. For the nest of 
reichardi, see the photographs in Vesey-FitzGerald (1956), for that of velatus 
in South Africa, see the drawing in McLachlan & Liversidge (1978: 572), 
and for the vitellinus group that in Crook (i960: 8). For comparative 
photographs of the two, obviously made of different materials, see Collias & 
Collias (1964: pi. 27), who also (pp. 71-80) describe the nests of various 
forms and in fact (p. 79) liken the nest of reichardi to that of taeniopterus , 
though they could examine only 2 of the former. 


Ruwet (1965 : 413-414) has discussed the breeding habits of the swamp- 
dwelling P. melanocephalus in the swamps bordering the lake Lufira (i.e. Lake 
Shangalele, or Tshangalele — cf. Times Atlas, 1975 : 203, at io°5o'S, 27^3 'E, 
and map in Ruwet 1963 : facing 60). Ruwet records several colonies, including 
one of more than 20 nests, without giving any details of the type of structure, 
although Plate iB indicates a similarity to that in the velatus\vitellinus complex. 
It is quite possible that melanocephalus does occur in this area, the form 
duboisi being definitely known from as near as the River Luapula and the 
Lomami District (Benson et al. 1971, Schouteden 1971: 219); yet only one 
specimen was collected, at Kinsamba, near the eastern edge of the maximum 
level of the lake (map in Ruwet 1963). Verheyen is cited as attributing it to the 
form dimidiatus, whereas Schouteden was dubious about its true identity. 
Indeed, Schouteden (1971: 221, 223) records only P. xanthops and ocularis in 
the name of Ruwet from the Lufira area. 

The Kinsamba specimen, a male in almost complete breeding dress, in the 
KMMA, No. 1 13 379, bearing no precise date of collection (but probably 
March i960 — Ruwet, pers. comm.) has been compared by both of us with 
every conceivable form of Ploceus (males in breeding dress), both in the 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: I02(l)] 26 

KMMA and in the British Museum (Natural History) (BMNH). From the 
strong chestnut wash on the chest and flanks, a priori 'it might be supposed to be 
possibly related to P. dicrocephalus, jacksoni, intermedius (chestnut present in 
P. /. intermedius and beattyi) or indeed melanocephalus (of which some forms, 
including dimidiatus, are washed with chestnut, but not so duboisi). In fact 
it differs markedly from all these in bill shape, and we believe that its nearest 
relative is reichardi. For reasons to be explained below, we propose giving it 
full specific status (and likewise reichardi and katangae). Accordingly we name 
it: — 

Ploceus ruweti sp. no v. 
Description of the unique holotype. Similar in colour and dimensions to the 
male in breeding dress of P. reichardi, but immediately distinguishable by 
much more extensive black on the top and sides of the head. The chestnut of 
the crown is replaced by black, merging sharply into the yellow of the nape 
(see Plate 1 A). The ear-coverts are wholly black, whereas in reichardi black is 
restricted to below the level of the eye (see again Plate iA), the remainder 
being yellow. There are also less marked differences: the dusky centres to 
the feathers of the wing-coverts in ruweti are more pronounced and the 
yellow tones are not so strong, this being best marked on the nape, pale 
lemon-yellow instead of golden yellow, but also apparent on the rump and 
abdomen. Conformably, the green of the mantle and back is duller, less 
yellowish. (It is possible that this dilution of the greens and yellows in 
ruweti is due to immersion of the specimen for an unspecified period in 

Table i 

Measurements in mm of P. ruweti and P. reichardi 



P. ruweti 

(from skull) 




P. reichardi 















42-46 (44.3) 









(a) Measurements by Louette from material in the Zoologisches Museum, Berlin (ZMB) : 
type from Karema, other 2 specimens from Karema, Membwa. 

(b) Measurements by Benson from material in the BMNH. 

Comparative measurements of ruweti and reichardi are given in Table 1. 
The figures for reichardi in the BMNH are from more or less the same 
material as studied by Benson (1955) (although an extra male has now been 
found), but from only one instead of 3 females, i.e. the one dated 15 July 
(1936) and which is inseparable in colour from a female of katangae taken in 
the same month. The 1955 culmen measurements are unaccountably shorter, 
although stated to have been taken from the base of the skull and Benson 
can only suggest that they might have been of the exposed part only. 

the systematic status of katangae, 
upembae, reichardi and ruweti 
Measurements of katangae taken by Benson from material in the BMNH 
are given in Table 2. Evidently katangae is similar in dimensions to reichardi 


[BulLBrit.Orn. CI. 1982:102(1)] 

Plate iA. Left, head of Ploceus ruweti $, right, of P. reichardi <j. (See Louette & Benson) 
Photo :M. J. Ashby. ' 


Plate iB : Nest attributed to Ploceus ruweti. (See Louette & Benson) Photo : J. C. Ruwet. 

Plate IIA. Colony of nests in Lufira delta, attributed to Ploceus ruweti. (See Louette & Benson) 
Photo: J. C. Ruwet. 

Plate I1B. Habitat typical of Ploceus ruweti, Lufira delta. (See Louette & Benson) Photo: 
|. C. Ruwet. 

29 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.19S2: ioz(i)\ 

(and apparently ruweti). The measurements of wing and culmen for katangae 
from a wider panel in Benson (1955) show no significant difference, although 
as for reichardi (above) the culmen measurements are unaccountably shorter. 
As to upembae, in neither colour nor dimensions does it differ strikingly from 
katangae. While Louette finds that females may be a trifle more olive yellow 
on the head and mantle, the most significant difference is perhaps that the 
bill is up to 2 mm longer (Verheyen 1953: 612, Benson 1955). Louette 
measured 3 upembae $$ — 2 from Mabwe in the Koninklijk Belgisch Institut 
voor Natuurwetenschappen (KBIN), Brussels, one from Kadia in the 
KMMA, as follows: — wing 66-69.5 (67.8), tail 45 (one), culmen (from skull) 
17-19(18), tarsus 20 (one) mm. 

Table 2 

Measurements in mm 1 





(from skull 







69 9 


40-41 (40.3) 



There is no strong reason against regarding katangae and upembae as 
conspecific. As to reichardi and ruweti, originally Benson speculated that they 
might be combined in a species distinct from katangae, on account of the rich 
suffusion of chestnut on the underparts and despite the greater extent of 
black on the head in ruweti. (Note that in P. cucullatus the crown is black in 
the males of all forms except the 2 southernmost, in which it is yellow — cf. 
White 1963: 135-137). It seemed possible that such a species could not co- 
exist with the species katangae because of similar ecological requirements 
accompanied by little or no difference in size, disregarding the rather longer 
bill of upembae. Nevertheless for the present we prefer to regard reichardi and 
ruweti as specifically distinct. The extent of black on the head in ruweti is 
particularly striking. Ruwet (1965 : 413) also records P. velatus, but does not 
appear to have obtained a supporting specimen. The record needs to be 
confirmed. If indeed it could be proved that the species katangae is represented 
in the Lufira area, then the specific status of ruweti would be confirmed 
beyond any doubt. Ruwet (1965 : 415) also records P. xanthopterus, but this 
has been questioned by Irwin & Benson (1966: 20), since in Zambia it is 
only known from Upper Zambezi drainage, above the Victoria Falls. One 
also wonders what may be the "Textor velatus" that Poelman (1967) records 
from Kasapa, n°34'S, 27^5 'E, stating that it lives along rivers or marshes 
and does not leave them. 

An inspection of map 331 in Hall & Moreau (1970) shows that their 
velatus group has barely penetrated the moist woodland belt of southern 
Africa except in certain isolated areas of swamp already referred to above. 
These areas are apparent on the map in Keay (1959) as type 20, "Undiffer- 
entiated relatively dry types", and described in the text (p. 9) as "alluvial 
savannas of tall grass with certain species of Acacia". From experience in 
Zambia, Benson can state that large areas of such alluvium are so moist as to 
be incapable of supporting the growth of any trees (unless one regards 
ambatch Sesbania spp. as such). So the term "swamp" as already used above 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: I02(l)] 30 

(and see also Benson et al. 1971: 24) seems appropriate. It is only in such 
areas that the velatus group (sensu Hall & Moreau) is represented. These 
authors give as one difference between their velatus and vitellinus groups that 
in vitellinus the crown (of the male in breeding dress) is suffused with 
chestnut. That this is so in reichardi has already been mentioned, and it applies 
to a lesser degree to katangae (including upembae). Thus these 3 forms show 
some evidence of being intermediate between the 2 groups, as might be 
expected on geographical grounds. Clancey (1974: 72) has alluded to the 
status of these swamp-dwellers, seemingly implying as one possible course 
their recognition as a discrete species, under the name reichardi. In the past 
reichardi has sometimes been regarded as a monotypic species, as indeed 
quite recently by Mackworth-Praed & Grant (1955) and Vesey-FitzGerald 
& Beesley(i96o). 

It seems that under present climatic conditions the velatus and vitellinus 
groups cannot exist in the moist Brachystegia ("Miombo") woodlands proper 
(vegetation types 18 and 19 in Keay 1959), but have managed to adapt to 
swamps in type 20, isolated within such woodlands. Such a habitat is 
favoured by certain other species of Ploceus in southern Africa, such as 
xanthopterus , subaureus and melanocephalus, while others, such as xanthops and 
cucullatus, are associated with water to some degree. Thus such an adaptation 
by the velatus group might be achieved fairly easily. 

We favour Clancey' s suggestions that reichardi be regarded as a full species. 
We would also extend Hall & Moreau's groups, adding a third, the reichardi 
group. Pending further detailed investigation of their biology (including 
nest structure and building technique), we would take a further step, and 
split this group into 3 species : — P. reichardi, P. katangae (to include upembae 
as a subspecies) and P. ruweti. 

Although similar in dimensions, colour-differences in these 3 species are 
very well marked, doubtless due to isolation in the moist woodlands by 
which they are surrounded. At present, the only possible difference that 
might be suspected in their biology is that reichardi can breed in quite large 
colonies (of up to 150 nests) ; but this may not be of any significance, since 
the number of nests grouped together even in this species may be as low as 

There are many instances of related forms showing a distributional gap 
between southern (or southwestern) and northern (or northeastern) Africa 
under existing climatic conditions. An extreme example is provided by 
another weaver, P. rubiginosus (map 332 in Hall & Moreau 1970), restricted 
to exceptionally dry country. Disregarding the swamp-associates, P. velatus 
(map 331,0/). cit.) provides a much less extreme instance of this phenomenon. 
The reichardi group, dividing the drier country velatus and vitellinus groups, 
provides only one of a number of instances of a representative in the moist 
woodland belt. Thus, in an entirely different family, the barbets Capitonidae, 
the Lybius leucomelas superspecies consists of 3 species, one in the moist 
woodland belt (L. frontatus), with another each in drier Acacia woodland 
respectively to the south and northeast (map 349 in Snow 1978). In this case 
it seems that there has been an adaptation by proto-frontatus stock direct 
from a drier to a moister type of woodland, rather than to swamp (a most 
unlikely habitat for any barbet) as in the reichardi group. 

3 1 {Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(1)} 

Acknowledgements: Louette is grateful to Major Melvin A. Traylor for the loan of a 
specimen of Ploceus intermedins beattyi from the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, 
to Dr. G. Mauersberger for the loan of material, including the type, of P. reichardi from 
the ZMB, and to Dr. A. Prigogine for access to the collections of the KBIN; and Benson 
likewise to the authorities of the BMNH at Tring for access to their collections. We are 
both grateful for the loan of specimens from the BMNH, through I. C. J. Galbraith and 
D. K. Read. Also, Prof. J. C. Ruwet most kindly placed his unpublished information at 
our disposal, and provided photographs. 

References : 

Aspinwall, D. R. 1974. Bird notes from Luapula Province. Bull. Zambian Orn. Soc. 6(1): 

Beesley, J. S. S. 1956. Notes on Ploceus reichardi Reichenow. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 76: 158-159. 
Benson, C. W. 1955. The Masked Weaver Textor velatus in the south-eastern Belgian Congo 

and north-eastern Northern Rhodesia. Rev. Zool.Bot. Afr. 52 : 177-180. 
Benson, C. W., Brooke, R. K., Dowsett, R. J. & Irwin, M. P. S. 1971. The Birds of Zambia. 

Collins : London. 
Benson, C. W. & Pitman, C. R. S. 1956. Some breeding records from Northern Rhodesia. 

Ool.Rec. 30: 7-1 1, 21-27, 37-43. 
Bohm, R. 1885. Ornithologische notizen aus Central- Afrika III./. Orn. Leipzig 33 : 35-73. 
Britton, P. L. (ed.). 1980. Birds oj East Africa. East Africa Natural History Society: Nairobi. 
Chapin, J. P. 1954. The birds of the Belgian Congo ^.Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 75B. 
Clancey, P. A. 1974. Miscellaneous taxonomic notes on African birds XXXVIII. Durban 

Mus. Novit. 10: 67-79. 
Collias, N. E. & Collias, E. C. 1964. Evolution of nest-building in the weaverbirds 

(Ploceidae). Univ. of Calif. Pubis. Zoo I. 73. 
Crook, J. H. i960. Nest form and construction in certain West African weaver-birds. 

Ibis 102: 1-26. 
Hall, B. P. & Moreau, R. E. 1970. An Atlas of Speciation in African Passerine Birds. Trustees 

of the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) : London. 
Irwin, M. P. S. & Benson, C. W. 1966. Notes on the birds of Zambia: part II. Arnoldia 

(BJod.)2( i7 ). 
Keay, R. W. J. (ed.). 1959. Vegetation Map of Africa. Oxford University Press. 
Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 195 5 . African Handbook of Birds 1(2). Longmans : 

McLachlan, G. R. & Liversidge, R. 1978. Roberts Birds of South Africa. Trustees of the 

John Voelcker Bird Book Fund : Cape Town. 
Poelman, L. 1967. Les oiseaux de la Kasapa. Publ. de V University Officielle du Congo a 

Lubumbashi 14: 39-71. 
Ruwet, J. C. 1963. Notes ecologiques et ethologiques sur les oiseaux des plaines de la 

Lufira superieure (Katanga) I. Rev. Zool.Bot. Afr. 68 : 1-60. 
Ruwet, J. C. 1965. Notes ecologiques et ethologiques sur les oiseaux des plaines de la 

Lufira superieure (Katanga) III. Rev. Zool.Bot. Afr. 72 : 389-427. 
Schouteden, H. 1971. La faune ornithologique de la Province du Katanga. Doc. Zool. 17. 
Snow, D. W. (ed.) 1978. An Atlas of Speciation in African Non-passerine Birds. Trustees of 

the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) : London. 
Taylor, P. B. 1977. Some records from Luapula Province. Bull. Zambian Orn. Soc. 9(2): 

Verheyen, R. 195 3. Exploration du Pare National de VUpemba. Fasc. 19. Brussels. 
Vesey-FitzGerald, D. F. 1956. Nesting of the Tanganyika Masked- Weaver. Bull. Brit. Orn. 

C/. 76: 134-135. 
Vesey-FitzGerald, D. & Beesley, J. S. S. i960. An annotated list of the birds of the Rukwa 

Valley. Tanganyika Notes <& Recs . 54: 91-110. 
White, C. M. N. 1963. A Revised Check list of African Flycatchers, etc. Department of Game 

and Fisheries : Lusaka. 

Address: Dr. M. Louette, Koninklijk Museum voor Midden- Afrika, Tervuren, Belgium. 
C. W. Benson, Dept. of Zoology, Cambridge, England. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: I02(l) ] 


Birds in west central Libya, 1980-81 
by P. J. Cowan 

Received $ August 1981 

Bundy (1976) reviewed the literature concerning records of birds in Libya 
and grouped records into 4 regions delineated by 3o°N and i9°E. Published 
papers listing birds seen in the "Fezzan" region (south of 3o°N, west of 
1 9°E) are few. The present paper reports observations of mine made from 
15 Sep 1980 to 19 June 1981 at Brak and other localities (Fig. 1) in Bundy's 

13' E 

u °i 

Al Qardah 


Wadi Azzallaf 

Ramlat Azzallaf 

27 M 



^ ^Wadi Ajjial 

100 km. 

7"*^ Roads 
'--''Approx. limit of 
Awbari sand sea 
'Approx. position of 

Fig. 1. Map showing Brak and other localities in west central Libya. 

The Wadi ash Shati is to the north of an arm of the Awbari Sandsea and 
contains, amongst others, the settlements of Idri, Maharouga, Brak and 
Ashkidah. The towns of Awbari and Sabha are in the Wadi Ajjial. Ramlats 
Azzallaf and Daouada are constituent sandseas in the Awbari Sandsea. 

The vicinity of Brak includes palmerie, ditches, dunes, escarpment, stony 
desert, wadi, part of a giant agricultural project (arable), pools and a stream 
which is presumably maintained by agricultural drainage. The agricultural 
project reaches Ashkidah. There are pools at Ashkidah and Maharouga. The 
vicinity of Sabha includes a lake and a pool. I did not locate the lake at 
Sabha studied by Erard & Larigauderie (1972), if it still exists. The Ramlat 
Daouada contains a number of lakes including Gabroan with its associated 

Observations were mainly made on walks in the vicinity of Brak. All of 
the places shown in Fig. 1 were visited at least once, except Wadi Azzallaf. 
In the following list, Bundy's (1976) sequence of species and species check- 
list number are used for convenience. I also list those species seen by myself, 

3 3 [Bull. Brit.Om. CI. 1982:102(1)} 

of each of which the Fezzan status appears reasonably certain on the basis of 
Bundy's (1976) review and which is not contradicted by my records. As far 
as possible, spellings of place names in this paper are those of the National 
Atlas (1978). Bundy's (1976) system of spelling place names was somewhat 
different, Sabha, Awbari and Idri were spelt Sebha, Oubari, Edri. Through- 
out the present paper "Fezzan" is used as defined by Bundy (1976). 

18. Egretta garyetta Little Egret. Maximum seen, c.25 on 26 Sep at Brak. 
Previously in autumn apparently only singles recorded. Also at Brak, 
singles 30 Dec and 1 8 Jan, the first winter records for the Fezzan. 

33. Anas querquedula Garganey. 6 at Sabha, 27 Mar and 5 there 9 Apr. The 
first spring records for the Fezzan. 

54. Buteo buteo Buzzard. Records of a dark-plumage "probable", 8 Nov — 
3 Mar at Brak. No previous Fezzan records. 

57. Circaetus gallicus Short-toed Eagle. One on 30 May, 1 June and 5 June 
at Brak. The first definite records for the Fezzan. 

58. Circus aeruginosus Marsh Harrier. Singles on 6 dates, 17 Oct- 14 Nov, 
also singles 26 Dec and 1 June, all at Brak. 2 at Sabha, 27 Mar and one there 
9 Apr. 2 unidentified harriers at Brak, 29 Nov and one there 27 Dec. No 
previous Fezzan records of harriers Nov, Dec or June. 

87. Fulica atra Coot. Several at Sabha, 27 Mar and 4 there 9 Apr. The first 
spring Fezzan records. 

88. Gallinula chloropus Moorhen. Noted on 9 dates at Brak. In Fezzan a 
breeding colony has previously been recorded at Sabha so is possibly also 
resident at Brak. 

92. Rallus aquaticus Water Rail. One at Brak, 25 Feb. Previously singles on 
3 dates in Fezzan, all in April. 

103. Vanellus vanellus Lapwing. 13 on 16 Dec, 2 on 27 Dec and one on 
1 2 Jan at Brak. The first inland records. 

116. himosa limosa Black-tailed Godwit. One at Sabha, 27 Mar. The 
second record for the Fezzan. 

127. Tringa ochropus Green Sandpiper. Noted at Brak on 2 dates in Sep, 

3 in Oct, 3 in Nov, 3 in Dec, 4 in Jan, 3 in Feb, 5 in Mar and 2 in Apr. 
Usually 1-2, but 3 and 5 respectively on 2 dates in Oct. Also spring records 
(3 dates) from Sabha. The winter records are the first for the Fezzan. 

129. Tringa totanus Redshank. 11 at Sabha, 27 Mar and c. 10 on 9 Apr. 
Previous Fezzan records are of only 1-2 per day. 

130. Himantopus himantopus Black- winged Stilt. 9 at Sabha, 27 Mar and 
one 9 Apr. 17 at Ashkidah, 30 Mar and 2 at Brak, 30 Apr. Previous Fezzan, 
maximum, 2 birds on any one day. 

147. Larus ridibundus Black-headed Gull. 2 at Brak, 25 Jan. 16 at Sabha, 27 
Mar and 7 there 9 Apr. One unidentified gull at Brak, 26 Dec and 28 Jan, 
and 2 there 28 Apr. First records of any gull in the Fezzan. 

164. Strep topelia senegalensis Palm Dove. Several at Maharouga, 7 Mar- 

4 at Brak, 2 5 Apr. First records for the Fezzan. 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 19 82: 102(1)] 34 

169. Asio flam mens Short-eared Owl. One at Brak, 3 Oct. Second autumn 
record for the Fezzan. 

173. Caprimulgus aegyptius Egyptian Nightjar. 4 at Brak, 23 Oct and 2 on 
6 Nov. First Fezzan records. 

180. Alcedo atthis Kingfisher. Singles at Brak, 20 Nov, 30 Dec, 12 Jan and 
21 Feb. First Fezzan records. 

207. Riparia riparia Sand Martin. One at Brak, 8 and 27 Oct. First autumn 
records for Fezzan, usually Mar-May. 

215. Motacilla cinerea Grey Wagtail. One at Brak, 6 Nov. Singles only on 
3 previous dates in Fezzan. 

251. Syl ia cantillans Subalpine Warbler. At Brak, 2 on 12 Jan, 5 on 27 Jan, 
3 on 19 Feb. 1-2 also seen on 2 dates in each of Mar, Apr (Brak) and Oct 
(Wadi Zigza). Only one previous winter record for Fezzan. 

256. Sylvia hortensis Orphean Warbler. One at Brak, 15 Apr. Third Fezzan 

258. Sylvia nana Desert Warbler. One at Brak, 26 Sep. First recorded 
occurrence in Fezzan outside the southwest. 

282. Saxkola rubetra Whinchat. Singles at Brak, 22, 27, 29 Sep, 3 and 5 Oct. 
1-2 recorded on 5 dates in spring. No previous autumn records for the 

283. Saxkola torquata Stonechat. One at Brak, 15 Nov. Second record for 
the Fezzan. 

288. Turdus torquatus Ring Ouzel. One at Brak, 1 Mar. Second Fezzan 

297. Acanthis cannabina Linnet. About 30 at Brak, 26 Dec. Two previous 
records, of flocks, in Fezzan. 

304. Rhodopechys githaginea Trumpeter Finch. 2 at Brak, 25 Feb, 2 and 3 Apr, 
11 June. Bundy (1976) comments that there are surprisingly few records for 
the Fezzan. 

307. Passer hispaniolensis Spanish Sparrow. Noted 6 Nov-23 Mar at Brak, 
the largest number recorded being c.iooo on 6 and 8 Nov. Previously not 
recorded in Fezzan in winter before Jan. 

Also recorded: — 12. Ardea cinerea, 13. Ardea purpurea, 14. Ardeola ralloides, 20. Nycticorax 
nycticorax, 24. Plegadis falcinellus, 26. Anas acuta, 56. Buteo rufinus (a probable), 60. Circus 
macrourus, 71. Falco biarmicus, 80. Falco tinnunculus, 97. Charadrius dubius, no. Calidris minuta, 
112. Gallinago gallinago, 121. Philomachus pugnax, 125. Tringa hypoleucos, 126. Tringa nebular ia, 
165. Streptopelia turtur, 172. Ot us scops, 181. Merops apiaster, 186. Upupa epops, 188. Alaemon 
alaudipes, 191. Ammomanes deserti, zoz. Delichon urbica, 204. Hir undo obsoleta, 206. Hirundo 
rustica, 208. Anthus campestris, 209. Anthus cervinus, 214. Motacilla alba, 216. Motacilla flava, 
218. Lanius excubitor, 221. Lanius senator, 225/226. Ficedula albicollis\semitorquata\hypoleuca 
(unseparated), 228. Muscicapa striata, 230. Acrocephalus schoenobaenus , 243/246. Phylloscopus 

35 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: io2(i)] 

collybitajtrochilus (unseparated), 245. Phylloscopus sibilatrix, 250. Sylvia borin, 257. Sylvia 
melanocephala, 262. Turdoides fulvus, 273. Oenanthe leucopyga, 277. Oenanthe oenanthe, 308. Passer 
simplex, 317. Corvus ruficollis. 

References : 

Bundy, G. 1976. The Birds of 'Libya. British Ornithologists' Union: London. 

Erard, C. & Larigauderie, F. 1972. Migration prenuptiale dans Pouest de la Libye. Oiseau 

Rev. Fr. Orn. 42 : 81-169, 253—284. 
National Atlas of the Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. 1978. Surveying Department, 

Secretariat of Planning, Tripoli. Arabic/English edition. 

Address: Dr. P. J. Cowan, Higher Institute of Technology, Brak, Socialist People's Libyan 
Arab Jamahiriya. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

On the status of the Green Pheasant 

by Derek Goodwin 

Received / August 19 81 

The Green Pheasant of Japan was formerly considered a subspecies of the 
Common Pheasant Phasianus colchicus (e.g. Peters 1934). Later (Delacour 
195 1, 1977, Schwartz & Schwartz 195 1, Cramp et al. 1980) it was treated as 
a distinct species, Phasianus versicolor. 

I recently had occasion to examine the large series of skins of Phasianus in 
the British Museum (Natural History) collection, which includes representa- 
tives of all the major groups of subspecies. As a result I believe that versicolor 
is best treated as a subspecies of P. colchicus, unless the mainland forms are to 
be split up into at least 3 different species, a course I do not advocate. 

Three subspecies of P. colchicus are currently recognised from the Japanese 
islands, versicolor, robustipes and tanensis. They show only slight differences 
and 2 of them, versicolor and robustipes, intergrade. For the present purpose 
(and possibly for most other purposes too) they can best be, and here will be, 
all included under the name versicolor. 

Delacour (1977) treats all the mainland forms as subspecies of P. colchicus 
and shows that they can be divided into 4 or possibly 5 main groups which 
differ most consistently from each other in the colour of their wing coverts 
(predominantly brown, white or bluish grey) and their lower backs and 
rumps (predominantly reddish brown, yellowish olive-green, or a silvery 
bluish green). As Delacour (1977), who has had extensive experience with 
these and other pheasants in captivity, points out, there are no known 
differences of voice or behaviour between any of the forms of Phasianus, they 
all interbreed freely if brought together (even at liberty) by human agency, 
and their hybrid or mongrel offspring are fully fertile. Nevertheless he 
thought it was appropriate to give versicolor specific rank because of its male 
being "entirely green on mantle and underparts". He differentiated females 
of versicolor as having the "feathers of the mantle mostly black" as against all 
mainland forms having them "mostly brown". 

Schwartz & Schwartz (195 1), in a study of Phasianus on Hawaii, where the 
Chinese Ring-necked Pheasant P. colchicus torquatus, the Mongolian Pheasant 
P. c. mongolicus and the Green Pheasant P. (c.) versicolor were known to have 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i9S2: I02(l)] 36 

been introduced, found some ecological separation, versicolor, or phenotypes 
resembling it, being confined to limited and relatively humid areas. In the 
"best" versicolor habitat, green Pheasants outnumbered ring-necks and 
(obvious) hybrids by 3 to 2 ; in other areas where versicolor occurred it was 
outnumbered 4 to 1. They apparently observed no behavioural differences 
or social segregation. 

Thus there is no behavioural evidence to suggest that versicolor is less 
closely related to mainland forms than mainland forms are to each other. 
Nor, I believe, do the difference in plumage colour warrant such a con- 
clusion. Taking the male of versicolor first, the mantle feathers, although they 
appear all dark green at a little distance, are in fact marked with buff and 
reddish buff. The scapulars on either side of them are predominantly coppery 
chestnut. The underparts are entirely dark green or dark bluish green and in 
this respect versicolor does, as Delacour says, differ from mainland races, all 
of which have some coppery red, chestnut, golden or buff colour at least on 
the flanks. However, P. c. elegans, from the mountains of southwestern 
Szechuan, northeastern Yunnan and the Shan States of Burma, has most of 
its underparts dark green like versicolor, being coppery red only on the 
flanks and extreme upper sides of the lower breast. P. c. suehschanensis, from 
northwestern Szechuan and eastern Tibet also has the underparts largely dark 
green but less extensively so than P. c. elegans. Also one of the white-winged 
subspecies, P. c. bianchii, has its entire breast predominantly blackish green, 
owing to very broad borders of this colour on the feathers. 

Thus although the male versicolor looks very different from the richly 
coppery red and golden males of the forms geographically nearest to it, 
namely P. c. torquatus from eastern China and P. c. karpowi from Korea, it 
looks not at all unlike P. c. elegans. If, therefore, we consider versicolor in 
relation to the plumage characters — colour of wing coverts and rump — on 
which Delacour separates his mainland groups of subspecies then we see 
that it agrees in this point with the grey-winged, silvery bluish green-rumped 
group, which includes, inter alia, its geographically nearest congeners. In 
more detail, its wing coverts nearly match those of P. c. elegans and its rump 
colouration is very like that on some specimens of P. c. torquatus. Its tail 
feathers also (another point on which there are differences between the main 
groups of subspecies) are very like those of P. c . torquatus except for having 
a sprinkling of dark dots between the black transverse bars and lacking any 
definite indication of reddish bars on the purplish-brown outer fringes of 
the central feathers. 

In the case of the female versicolor I think that Delacour has rather over- 
emphasised the relative darkness of this form. As with other forms of 
Phasianus, there is an appreciable amount of individual variation and, through 
abrasive loss of part of the lighter parts of individual feathers, birds in worn 
plumage look markedly darker than newly-moulted specimens. When 
allowance is made for plumage state, some female versicolor differ from some 
specimens of P. c . torquatus and from most of our specimens of P. c. elegans 
only in having the pale buff areas of the feathers of the underparts speckled 
(some very lightly, some heavily) with small spots of blackish drab. Some 
specimens of versicolor are admittedly very dark but others are actually lighter 
in appearance than most of our females of P. c. elegans. 

37 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.19S2: 102 (i)\ 

It seems probable that in Phasianus, as in many other species of birds, an 
increase of dark plumage pigmentation is correlated with a more humid 
environment. This may account for the over-all similarity in both sexes of 
versicolor and elegans being greater than that between versicolor and torquatus or 
karpowi, which are nearest to it geographically. 

In conclusion, there seem no good grounds for treating versicolor as a full 
species on its plumage characters and as there are not, so far as is known, 
any other characters in which it differs from mainland forms, it is best treated 
as conspecific with them. 

Two other points resulting from the examination of all the British Museum 
(Natural History) Phasianus specimens seem worth brief mention here. 
Delacour (195 1, 1977) has lucidly explained the incorrectness of the wide- 
spread idea that the "melanistic mutant", P. colchicus var. tenebrosus, originated 
from hybridisation of versicolor with other subspecies. Since some authorities 
still appear to doubt this, it may be said that, in my opinion, the B.M. 
specimens, which include very many examples of the dark mutant and some 
genuine crosses between versicolor and other forms, confirm Delacour's 

Secondly, it is clear that many pheasants which sportsmen have shot or 
aviculturists kept in Britain, and which they have thought to be specimens 
of P. c. torquatus or P. c.formosanus, in fact differ markedly from wild examples 
of these subspecies, particularly in their having the upper parts of their 
plumage more uniformly light in ground colour, and in showing much less 
contrast between the feathers of the flanks and those of the lower breast. 

References : 

Cramp, S. et al. (1980). Handbook of the Birds of Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. 
Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. 

Delacour, J. 195 1. The Pheasants of the World. Country Life. 

— 1977. The Pheasants of the World. 2nd ed. Saiga Publishing Co : Surrey. 
Peters, J. L. 1934. Check-list of Birds of the World. Vol. 2. Harvard University Press. 

Schwartz, C. W. & Schwartz, E. R. 195 1. An ecological reconnaissance of the Pheasants in 
Hawaii. Auk 68 : 281-314. 

Address: D. Goodwin, British Museum (Natural History), Tring, Herts. HP23 6AP, 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

The natal pterylosis of Manacus manacus (Pipridae) 
by Charles T. Collins 

Received 26 August 19 81 

The manakins (Pipridae) are a familiar part of the avifauna of many parts of 
the Neotropics. Even so, the only information on the natal pterylosis of 
these subossine birds is confined to unquantified accounts of 5 species. 
Newly hatched young of Pipra coronata, P. mentalis, Manacus aurantiacus and 
Cbiroxiphia linearis are reported to have scant or sparse grey or greyish-tan 

[Bull.Brit.Orn. CI. 1982: 102(1)} 


downs (Skutch 1969, Foster 1976) while Schiffornis turdinus has "copious long 
brownish grey down, more abundant than that on the nestlings of the 
majority of passerine birds" (Skutch 1969: 155). This paper, part of a 
continuing analysis of the natal pterylosis of Neotropical passerines (Collins 
1963, 1973, Collins & Kemp 1976, Collins & Bender 1977), presents data 
on 3 nestlings of the Black and White Manakin Manacus manacus. 

All 3 specimens were collected by me in St. George County, Trinidad; 2 
(specimens A & B) were taken from a nest in Arima Valley on 17 June 1963 
and one (specimen C) from a nest in Aripo Valley on 22 June 1964. All 3 
were very small nestlings no more than a day or two old (Stage A, see 
Wetherbee 1957: 356) with only a light covering of light brownish grey 
neossoptiles. The total number of neossoptiles varied from 105 to 175 
distributed in 10 or 11 tracts (Table 1). As noted in the earlier studies, there 
is considerable intraspecific variation in neossoptile numbers. In this case it 
is due in large part to the greatly reduced neossoptiles on the ventral tract 
and rectrices of specimen C; specimens A and B show much closer agreement 
in number and distribution of downs. 


Table i 
Distribution of neossoptiles in Manacus manacus 

Specimen A Specimen B 










Post Auricular 








Spinal (upper) 




Spinal (lower)** 




















Greater Secondary Coverts 




Middle Secondary Coverts 




Lesser Secondary Coverts 








♦counts from left/right sides 
♦♦unpaired portion of tract located on midline 

The pattern of neossoptile distribution illustrated here may be rep- 
resentative for some of the more "typical" manakins of the genera Manacus, 
Pipra and Chiroxiphia. However, this pattern cannot be considered to be 

39 [Bull.Brit.Orrt.Cl.19S2: I02(i)\ 

typical of the Pipridae as a whole as it is appreciably different from that 
reported for the Thrush-like Manakin Schiffornis turdinus (Skutch 1969). 
Detailed observations of the natal pterylosis of this and other genera such as 
Sapayoa, Tyranneutes and Neopelma would likely provide valuable data and 
aid in our understanding of the relationships of this diverse family of birds. 

Acknowledgements: Kristen Bender was of great assistance in making the neossoptile 
counts presented here. 

References : 

Collins, C. T. 1963. The natal pterylosis of tanzgets. Bird-Banding 34: 36-38. 

— 1973- The natal pterylosis of the Swallow-tanager.i?#//. J 5r//. Orn. CI. 93:15 5-1 5 7. 

— & Kemp, M. H. 1976. Natal pterylosis of Sporophila finches. WilsonBull. 88 : 1 54-157. 

— & Bender, K. E. 1977. Cervical neossoptiles in a Neotropical passerine. Bull. Brit. 
Orn.Cl.97: i33- I 35- 

Foster, M. S. 1976. Nesting biology of the Long-tailed Manakin. WilsonBull. 88 : 400-420. 

Skutch, A. F. 1969. Life histories of Central American birds. III. Pacif .Coast Avif. 36: 1-580. 

Wetherbee, D. K. 1957. Natal plumages and downy pteryloses of passerine birds of North 
America. Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 113: 339-436. 

Address: Dr. Charles T. Collins, Department of Biology, California State University, Long 
Beach, California 90840, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

Occurrence of the Lesser Adjutant Stork 
Leptoptilos javanicus on Bali, Indonesia 

by Murray D. Bruce 

Received 19 September ipSi 

In the most recent summary of the geographical distribution of storks, 
Kahl (1979: 252) did not list the Lesser Adjutant Stork Leptoptilos javanicus 
from Bali. Stresemann (1913 : 332) reported a sight record from western Bali 
that was given to him by a tiger hunter, but Chasen (1935: 54) later questioned 
Bali as a locality. In the late afternoon of 6 September 1980 I observed one 
foraging on the reef platform and adjacent beach area of the Bali Barat 
Nature Reserve, northwestern Bali. I followed it closely for 300 metres until 
it flew off to roost in a large tree nearby. 

This stork was first recorded from east Java by Hoogerwerf (1948a: 48) in 
the Baluran National Park (cf. Wind & Amir 1977: 75) and is probably the 
most numerous of the 3 storks recorded in west Java (Hoogerwerf 1948b: 
121; 1969: 54). There are now a number of records from east Java east to 
Banyuwangi, opposite Bali (D. A. Holmes), and its presence on Bali would 
not be unexpected, as evidenced by June 198 1 observations from north Bali 
reported to me by V. Mason and J. L. McKean severally. 

A review of the status elsewhere in Indonesia revealed the following :- 
Sumatra. Most of the limited museum material is from last century, but there 
have been recent records (D. A. Holmes). Bangka. Not mentioned by Kahl, 
but it has been collected there (G. F. Mees). Kalimantan (Indonesian Borneo). 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: I02(l)} 40 

Not indicated from this part of Borneo by Smythies (1968 : 137), but during 
the igjo's it was protected there by law and there were a few scattered 
records, particularly from the south and east, including a specimen from 
Rantau (G. F. Mees) as well as one recently observed at Banjarmasin (D. A. 
Holmes). Dr. G. F. Mees kindly provided additional details for Kalimantan: 
"... in the logo's prosecutions took place in Pontianak for the illegal 
keeping of these birds. It is very unlikely that these would have been other 
than local birds"; and for records in south and east Kalimantan: he states 
that these storks and ibises have not been reported from coastal areas but 
mostly along the large rivers (in E. Borneo from Mahakam, Belajan, Kedang 
Rantan and Telen). 

I concur with the conclusion reached by D. A. Holmes that this stork is 
widely distributed in these islands, and not uncommon in suitable localities, 
although in very small numbers. 

Acknowledgements: I thank E. C. Dickinson, I. C. J. Galbraith, D. A. Holmes, V. Mason, 
J. L. McKean, and especially G. F. Mees for discussions and assistance with enquiries on 
this stork. 

References : 

Chasen, F. N. 1935. A handlist of Malaysian birds. Bull. Raffles Mus. 11 : xx + 389 pp. 

Hoogerwerf, A. 1948a. Het Wildreservaat Baloeran. Tectona 38 : 33-49. 

— 1948b. Contribution to the knowledge of the distribution of birds on the island of 
Java. Treubia 19: 83-137. 

— 1969. On the ornithology of the Rhino Sanctuary, Udjung Kulon in west Java 
(Indonesia). Nat. Hist. Bull. Siam Soc. 23 : 9-65. 

Kahl, M. P. 1979. Family Ciconiidae. In E. Mayr & G. W. Cottrell (editors), Check-list of 
Birds of the World. Vol. 1, 2nd ed. pp. 245-25 2. Mus. Comp. Zool: Cambridge. 

Smythies, B. E. 1968. The Birds of Borneo. 2nd ed. Edinburgh : Oliver & Boyd. 

Stresemann, E. 1913. Die Vogel von Bali. Novit. Zool. 20: 325-387. 

Wind, J. & Amir, H. 1977. Proposed Baluran National Park. Management Plan 1978- 
1982. Bogor: UNDP/FAO Nature Conservation and Wildlife Management Project 
INS/73/013. Field Report 4 : iv + 100 pp. 

Address: Murray D. Bruce, 8 Spurwood Road, Turramurra, NSW 2074, Australia. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 


Juvenal plumage of the White-throated 
Thicket-flycatcher Pachycephalopsis poliosoma 

The New Guinea genus Pachycephalopsis (Pachycephalidae) consists of 2 
species, the Green Thicket-flycatcher P. hattamensis and the White-throated 
Thicket-flycatcher P. poliosoma. The former is considered rare, but the latter, 
though relatively common, is shy and retiring and little is known about its 
life history. Not even the juvenal plumage of P. poliosoma appears to have 
been previously described and the following description is of a specimen in 
the collection of the American Museum of Natural History, New York 
(AMNH 341453, male, Balim River, 13 December 1938). 

41 [BulLBHt.Orn.Cl.i982: 102(f)] 

This is the only juvenal specimen in the AMNH series. It has not under- 
gone its first prebasic moult. The crown, mantle, back, rump and tail are 
uniformly dark olive-brown. Lores are very dark blackish-brown. The chin 
is white. The throat, breast and flanks are brown. Feathers of the belly are 
off-white, becoming darker towards the tips, which have light brown terminal 
edges, giving a slightly mottled appearance. The undertail coverts are tan. 
Wings are dark olive-brown without paler edging to the coverts or remiges. 
Overall, this juvenal plumage resembles a dark version of the Pachycephala- 
and Poecilodryas-type. 

No soft part colours are given on the label but M. LeCroy (in litt.) gives 
the following description: "from the skin it appears that the bill was quite 
dark with yellow at the gape and on the upper edge of the lower mandible at 
the base. The legs and feet appear as though they were yellowish or fleshy, 
much lighter than in the adult". 

There are no juvenals of P. hattamensis in the AMNH collection; none has 
yet been described. 

Acknowledgements: I wish to thank Mary LeCroy for the information on the soft part 
colours. While at the American Museum of Natural History my work was supported by a 
Frank M. Chapman Memorial Grant. 

19 August 1 98 1 Walter E. Boles 

Address: Department of Ornithology, Australian Museum, 6-8 College 
Street, Sydney, N.S.W. 2000, Australia. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos breeding in 
Oman, eastern Arabia 

The breeding of the Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos, only once previously 
reported anywhere in Arabia, was proved in the Sultanate of Oman, eastern 
Arabia, by the discovery (by MRB) of 2 downy chicks, 2-3 weeks old, on a 
tree nest in the central desert region on 21 January 1981. On 8 February 
198 1 MDG found one chick in a second nest about 1 10 km to the southwest, 
where MRB had seen 2 fledged young perched above the same nest on 

3 April 1980 (MDG & MRB in press, Sandgrouse). 

In the first nest one chick was seen being harried by its sibling and was 
found dead on 30 January (P. Harris pers. comm.), the survivor fledging on 

4 March. A backward projection (R. F. Porter in litt.) suggests the cycle: 
courtship and nest-building late September to early November, first egg laid 
very approximately 18 November, first chick hatched very approximately 
1 January. From these and our other sightings in 1980-81, and from 4 other 
unoccupied nests, A. chrysaetos would appear to be a scarce breeding resident 
in the desert and semi-desert of Oman, wherever there are suitable trees 
(such as Prosopis cineraria) and prey (mostly hare Lepus capensis). 

The only other published report of the Golden Eagle breeding in the 
Arabian Peninsula was of one chick and one egg (75 x 60 mm) removed 
from a cliff nest near Jeddah, SW Saudi Arabia, on 6 February 1948 
(Meinertzhagen (1949), Ibis 91: 465-482; G. B. Popov in litt.). Popov's 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.ipS2:i02(i)] 42 

photograph of 12 March 1948 shows the chick about 6 weeks old (R. F. 
Porter in lift.). M. P. Walters (pers. comm.) recently re-examined one of the 
2 eggs collected by B. Thomas (1931, Geogr. J. 78 : 209-242) from a tree nest 
in the Hadh Muzariq sands of the Empty Quarter of Saudi Arabia at about 
20°44'N, 5 i°3o'E in mid-January, and considers that at 77.4 x 5 5.9 mm it is 
too big for Abyssinian Tawny Eagle A. r. raptor, as suggested by Kinnear 
(193 1, Ibis (13)1: 698-701), and, excluding Imperial Eagle A. heliaca on 
account of the latter's more northerly breeding range, it is almost certainly 
an egg of the Golden Eagle, apparently the first evidence of breeding in 

Regarding distribution elsewhere, M. C. Jennings, who kindly gave us 
details of his researches for 'The Birds of Saudia Arabia: a Check-list , (198 1), 
considers the species to be a rare breeding resident in Hejaz and Northern 
Hejaz. In North Yemen, Thiollay & Duhautois reported display and they 
suspected breeding (Oiseau 46(3), 1976: 261-271). In Sinai a chick was 
removed from a cliff nest on 4 March 1927 (Meinertzhagen (1930), Nicotics 
Birds of Egypt, Vol. 2: 385). In Israel in 1981 there were about 15 pairs 
(Y. Leshem in litt.). This evidence supports the probability that the Golden 
Eagle is a scarce resident breeder in the desert and semi-desert of Arabia. 

10 December 1981 M. D. Gallagher 

Address: Office for Conservation of the Environment, PO Box 246, Muscat, 
Sultanate of Omen. 

M. R. Brown 

Address: 'Keven', Tytherington, Wotton-under-edge, Glos. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 


Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 198 1. African Handbook of Birds. Series 2. 
Birds of the Southern Third of Africa, Vols. 1 & 2, with Publisher's note and a Biography 
of the authors. Longman: London. Vol 1. Pp. i-xxvii, 1-661 + Index. £30. Vol. 2. Pp. 
i-x, 1 -7 1 2 + Index. £30. Series 3. Birds of West Central and Western Africa, Vols. 1 & 2, 
with Publisher's note and a biography of the authors. Longman: London. Vol. 1. Pp. 
i-xxxii, 1-639 + Index. £30. Vol. 2. Pp. i-x, 1-774 + Index. £30. 

Welcome reprints of the 1962/63 and 1970/73 original editions respectively of these 
classical volumes, together with their coloured and other illustrations. Series 1 is noticed 
mBull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 100(3): 206. 

Elgood, J. H. 1 98 1. The Birds of Nigeria — an annotated check-list. Pp. 1-246. British Orni- 
thologists' Union, c/o Zoological Society, Regent's Park, London NWi 4RY. £14 (£10 
to members). 

The fourth in the series of avifaunal lists being published by the BOU. 831 species are 
treated, each being given its status and preferred habitat, distribution and movements, and 
breeding dates if known. The introductory chapters include a review of past literature and 
discuss the Nigerian environment, migration (Palaearctic and intra- African), breeding 
seasons and other subjects. There are 4 Appendix analyses, a gazetteer, a comprehensive 
list of references and indices of genera and of English names. 


Papers, whether by Club Members or by non-members, should be sent to the 
Editor, Dr. J. F. Monk, The Glebe Cottage, Goring, Reading RG8 9AP, and 
are accepted on the understanding that they are offered solely for publication 
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Scientific nomenclature and the style and lay-out of papers and of Refer- 
ences should conform with usage in this or recent issues of the Bulletin, unless 
a departure is explained and justified. Photographic illustrations, although 
welcome, can only be accepted if the contributor is willing to pay for their 

An author wishing to introduce a new name or describe a new form should 
append nom.ygen., sp. or subsp. nov., as appropriate, and set out the supporting 
evidence under the headings "Description", "Distribution", "Type", 
"Measurements of Type" and "Material examined", plus any others needed. 

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Available on application to Dr. D. W. Snow, British Museum (Natural 
History), Tring, Herts, as follows: 198 1 (Vol. 101) £3 each issue, 1980 
(Vol. 100) No. 1 £4. No. 2, 3 & 4 £2 each, 1 973-1 979 (Vols. 93-99) £2. 
each issue (4 per year), 1969-72 (Vols. 89-92) £1.50 each issue (6 per year), 
before 1969 £1.00 each issue (generally 9 per year) ; Indices : Vol. 70 and after 
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have been specially reprinted. Orders overs £50 are post free. 

Only Members of the British Ornithologists' Union are eligible to join the 
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Correspondence about Club meetings and other matters not mentioned 
above should go to the Hon. Secretary, R. E. F. Peal, 2 Chestnut Lane, 
Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR. 

Published by the BRITISH ORNITHOLOGISTS' CLUB and printed by 
The Caxton and Holmesdale Press, 104 London Road Sevenoaks Kent. 

ISSN 0007-1595 

Bulletin of the 

British Ornithologists' Club 

Edited by 
Dr. J. F. MONK 

Volume 102 No. 2 

June 1982 


Tuesday, 22 June 1982 Dr T. J. Seller on Are bullfinches and Fruit Crops 
really incompatible ? Full information about this Meeting was published in the 
Bulletin Vol. 102 No. 1. 

Tuesday, 20 July 1982 in the Staff Dining Room, first floor, Sherfield 
Building, Imperial College, Exhibition Road, S.W.7 at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m. 
(The Sherfield Building is in the main block of Imperial College, on the west 
side of Exhibition Road.) Mr T. M. Gullick, who has lived in Spain for a 
number of years, will speak on Birds in central Spain. Those wishing to attend 
should send their acceptance with a cheque for £5.70 a person to the Hon. 
Treasurer at 5 3 Osterley Road, Isleworth, Middlesex TW7 4PW (telephone 
01-560 1019) to arrive not later than first post on Thursday, 15 July. 

Tuesday, 21 September 1982 in the Senior Common Room, South Side, 
Imperial College, Prince's Gardens, S.W.7 at 6-3° p.m. for 7 p.m. Dr David 
Houston, Hon. Secretary of the B.O.U., will speak on Vultures, on which he 
is an authority. Those wishing to attend should send their acceptance with a 
cheque for £5.90 a person to the Hon. Secretary at 2 Chestnut Lane, Seven- 
oaks, Kent TN13 3AR (telephone Sevenoaks (0732) 450313) to arrive not 
later than first post on Thursday, 16 September. 

Saturday, 16 October 1982 A visit at 10.30 a.m. to the Harrison Zoologi- 
cal Museum, Bowerwood House, St Botolph's Road, Sevenoaks (close to 
the station), with its notable collection of mounted birds and of skins, 
founded by the late Dr James Harrison. After a buffet lunch, the Sevenoaks 
Experimental Wildfowl Reserve, created by the late Dr Jeffery Harrison, 
will be visited. Those wishing to attend should send their acceptance on the 
enclosed slip with a cheque for £3.30 a person for lunch to reach the Hon. 
Secretary not later than first post on Wednesday, 13 October. It may be 
necessary to limit the number who can be accommodated at the Museum. 

Tuesday, 23 November 1982 at Imperial College at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m. 
Dr A. W. Diamond will speak on The Birds of the Western Indian Ocean 

Volume 48 of the Bulletin, out of print for many years, has 
now been reproduced and copies are available: single num- 
bers £2 each, index £4 with a special price of £20 for the 
whole volume. 


D. R. Calder (Chairman) B. Gray ( V ice-Chairman) 

R. E. F. Peal(//o«. Secretary) Mrs. D. M. Bradley (Hon. Treasurer) 

Dr. J.F. Uonk(Editor) J.G.Parker 

R. A. N. Croucher Revd. G. K. McCulloch, O.B.E. 

P. J. Conder, O.B.E. 

British Ornithologist's Club 1982. 

[Bull.Brtt.Orn.Cl.i982: 102(2)] 

Bulletin of the 


Vol. 102 No.2 Published: 18 June 1982 

The Annual General Meeting of the British Ornithologists' Club was held at Imperial 
College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday, 18 May, 1982 at 6 p.m. with Mr D. R. Calder in the 
Chair. Twelve Members were present. 

The Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on 19 May 198 1 (Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 
101 1273) were approved and signed by the Chairman. 

The Report of the Committee for 198 1 was presented by the Hon. Secretary and the 
Accounts for 198 1 were presented by the Hon. Treasurer. The Hon. Treasurer explained 
that the major increases in income were in subscriptions, thanks mostly to increases in the 
numbers of Members and of non-member Bulletin subscribers resulting from the dispatch of 
leaflets as journal inserts and by direct mailing, and in Bulletin back number sales, arising 
from the reprinting of back numbers in 1980 and the despatch of publicity leaflets in 1981. 
As regards expenditure, the absence of an increase in printing charges in 198 1 had made it 
possible to publish more pages in the Bulletin than had been planned. In view of the special 
factors involved, a surplus of income over expenditure of the same size could not be 
expected in 1982. On the proposal of Mr J. H. Elgood, seconded by Mr P. J. Conder, it was 
resolved unanimously that the Report of the Committee for 1981 and the Accounts for 
198 1 be received and adopted. 

As regards the Bulletin, the Editor reported that the backlog of papers, which had arisen 
when Vol. 100 No. 1 had been devoted to invited contributions, had now been cleared and 
that papers were again published within six to nine months of acceptance. 

There being no nominations additional to those of the Committee, the following were 
declared duly elected :- 

Hon Treasurer: Mrs D. M. Bradley (re-elected). 
Non Secretary: Mr R. E. F. Peal (re-elected) 

Committee: Mr P. J. Conder, O.B.E. (vice Mr R. D. Chancellor, who retired by rotation and 
was ineligible for re-election). 

The Meeting closed at 6.22 p.m. 

The seven hundred and thirty-eighth Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuseday, 2 March, 1982 at 7 p.m. 
The attendance was 22 Members and 12 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER (Chairman), K. F. BETTON, Dr G. BEVEN, 

Revd. g. k. Mcculloch, Dr j. f. monk, p. j. Oliver, j. g. parker, r. e. f. 


Guests present were: Miss M. BARRY, Mrs G. BEVEN, K. D. BISHOP, Miss SARAH 
and one other guest. 

Professor Gordon H. Orians gave an address of great interest on Mates and Real Estate 
in Blackbird Social Systems. He described some of the work which he and his students had 
undertaken on icterid blackbird ecology, behaviour and breeding biology and the con- 
siderable increase in knowledge that it had produced. 

The seven hundred and thirty-ninth Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday, 18 May, 1982 at 7 p.m. 
The attendance was 23 Members and 6 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER (Chairman), K. F. BETTON, Mrs DIANA 
B. GRAY, M. C. HODGSON, P. HOGG, J. KING, Dr A. G. KNOX, Revd. G. K. 

I fill 82 2^11 

45 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: 102(2)] 

Guests present were: Miss D. BURGESS, A. C. ELEY, Mrs I. McCULLOCH, Dr 

Mr P. J. Conder spoke on Some Wetlands in Sind. He described areas which he had 
studied whilst preparing management plans for the World Wildlife Fund and gave details 
of the vast numbers of wildfowl and other birds present. He also explained the difficulties 
encountered in the conservation of birds there. His talk was illustrated with excellent slides. 

A new race of the Spotted Ground Thrush 
Turdus fischeri from South Sudan 

by G. Nikolaus 

Received 19 January 1982 

During my 3 -year study of the Imatong Mountains in South Sudan, I 
collected in the Lotti Forest (4 03 'N, 32 32' E), on the southwestern slopes 
of the mountains, a single specimen of Turdus fischeri. I propose to name it: — 

Turdus fisheri maxis subsp. nov. 

Diagnosis: Differs generally from all other named races, and from a specimen 
from Upemba, southern Zaire, in its much darker and browner upperparts, 
and in being shorter winged (see Table 1). Further differences are: primary 
and secondary coverts blackish brown, contrasting with mantle; primary 
covert feathers each only with a small buff spot, instead of a broad light band 
in all other specimens examined ; spotting of breast and flanks more heavily 
pronounced, the individual spots larger, almost jet black, only a little 
unspotted white on centre of belly ; first (outer) primary in relation to total 
wing-length longer (details in Table 1) and broader. 

Distribution: So far only known from the type locality, the Lotti Forest, 
where this one bird was caught on the first of 3 days mist-netting in virgin 
tropical lowland forest. This subspecies is isolated by 1 200 km from T. /. 
fischeri on the Kenya coast, 2200 km from T.f. belcheri in southern Malawi, 
1 600 km from the unnamed Zaire form, and 3 5 00 km from T. /. natalicus in 
South Africa. 

Type: Subadult female (age about 6 months, head, tail and wing coverts 
still partly in immature plumage, collected in the Lotti Forest, Imatong Mts, 
South Sudan, at an elevation of 1250 m, 11 October 1979; in Naturkunde- 
museum Stuttgart, no. 58038. 

Measurements and weight of type: Wing 108 (live bird, no), tail 88, tarsus 34, 
culmen from base 24 mm, weight 62 g. 

Further material examined: 

T. f. fischeri: Sokoke Forest, Kenya, ad. $, 23.4.70; 2 ad. #<£, 2 ad. ?$, 

May 1966. 
T.f. belcheri: Thyolo (Cholo) Mt., Malawi, ad. $, 21.9.5 1. 
T.f. subsp.: Upemba, Zaire, ad. ?, 7.10.73. 
T.f. natalicus: Cape Prov., South Africa. 2 ad. <2J, 8 ad. unsexed. 

All in British Museum (Natural History), Tring, except for the Zaire speci- 
men, in Koninklijk Museum voor Midden- Afrika, Tervuren, and 3 T. f 
fischeri in the National Museum of Kenya, Nairobi. 

Remarks: The Imatong bird is named after our son Max. 

Turdus fischeri is a rare bird of forests in eastern and southern Africa. The 

[Bull. Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 





















































1 — 




























^ ON 


On 00 

O £ 

^ k 

\0 o 

ON 2 


2 o 

-° O 

I g- 

o .g 

<2 * 

a .a* 


a g 

I § 


47 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: 102(2)] 

2 coastal races are known to be migratory, but the inland populations seem 
to be more sedentary, although it is very likely that the Imatong birds have 
local seasonal vertical movements. Benson & Benson (1975) suggest that 
belcheri is "probably resident", but Benson (pers. comm.) points out that they 
only knew of records for September and November (egg-laying in Novem- 
ber). There is now also a record for 31 August (Douglas 1978). Benson feels 
that the situation in Malawi needs further investigation, especially as the 
figures in Table 1 for belcheri are similar to those for the migratory natalicus 
(see further below); but belcheri may at least show local vertical movements. 
From the age of the specimen of maxis, I would expect breeding at the start 
of the rains, in April, which is the opposite time of year to Malawi, south of 
the Equator, where the rains start in October or November. 

The measurements in Table 1 indicate variations in the overall wing-length 
and (no less importantly) in the wing-formula of the species, even although 
unfortunately the only populations represented by more than one specimen 
are the coastal natalicus and nominate fischeri. That these 2 coastal populations 
are migratory is probably due to seasonal changes in habitat. Both show a 
tendency to long, pointed wings, most pronounced in. fischeri, whose breeding 
grounds are still unknown. The wings of the evidently more strictly seden- 
tary inland populations tend to be shorter and rounder, with an extreme in 
maxis of the Imatongs. According to the data in Table 1, it appears appro- 
priate that the Zaire specimen is treated separately from belcheri, since all the 
figures for belcheri differ considerably, falling, indeed, within the ranges for 
the 10 specimens of natalicus. Thus the inland belcheri is exceptional in its 
wing measurements, and its separation from the breeding grounds of 
natalicus may have been a relatively recent event. 

Based not only on the figures in Table 1 but also on the colour-characters 
described, it seems justifiable to recognise this new race, even though it is 
only known from a single sub-adult specimen. If immediate steps are not 
taken to preserve the Imatong forests, maxis could become extinct before 
more is learned about it. 


Benson would like to add to his personal communication above re T. f. belcheri: 'apart 
from Douglas's record for 3 1 August, which is from Soche Mt, one was seen by Johnston- 
Stewart (Nyala 3(1), 1977: 89) on Thyolo Mt, 8 July. Neither record is questioned by 
Dowsett {Nyala 7(1), 198 1: 39-40) in his review of montane birds in Malawi. The July 
record does not support the likelihood of any movement.' - Ed. 

Acknowledgements: I am grateful to C. W. Benson for his helpful comments on this paper; 
to I. C. J. Galbraith for access to the collections in Tring; to G. R. Cunningham- van 
Someren for sending me the measurements of the 3 skins in the Nairobi Museum ; and to 
Dr. M. Louette for the loan of the specimen from Zaire, in Tervuren. Further I wish to 
thank the Ministry of Wildlife in Juba, especially Director Henry Minga, for assistance and 
permission to carry out studies in the Imatong Mountains. 
References : 
Benson, C. W. 1950. Some notes on the Spotted Forest Thrush Turdus fischeri. Ostrich 21: 

Benson, C. W. & Benson, F. M. 1975. Studies of some Malawi birds. Amoldia(Rhod.) 7(32). 
Britton, P. L. & Rathbun, G. B. 1978. Two migratory thrushes and the African Pitta in 

coastal Kenya. Scopus 2 : 1 1-17. 
Douglas, M. G. 1978. Nyala Records. Nyala (J. Nat. Fauna Pres. Soc. Malawi) 4(2) 1117. 

Address: G. Nikolaus, Feldweg 87, 219 Cuxhaven, West Germany. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: 102(2)] 48 

Weights of some Venezuelan birds 

by Betsy Trent Thomas 

Received 14 September 1981 
In spite of recent advances in our knowledge of the avifauna of the northern 
neotropics, much basic information, such as body weights, remains un- 
available for many species. I give here 738 body weights of 141 species of 
Vene2uelan birds. Other papers with weights of birds from northern South 
America are from Colombia (Miller 1947, Burton 1973, 1975, Russell et al. 
1979), Venezuela (Collins 1972), Trinidad (Snow & Snow 1963, ffrench 1973) 
and Suriname (Haverschmidt 1948, 1952, 1968). 

From 1976 to 1981, during the course of several field studies, I obtained 
most of the weights presented here from birds mist-netted on a cattle ranch 
in the Venezuelan llanos, Estado Guarico (elev. 63 m); a detailed treatment 
of the avifauna of this area is presented elsewhere (Thomas 1979). Smaller 
samples of birds were netted at 2 sites in Estado Miranda, Los Anaucos 
(elev. 550 m) and Fila Mitana (elev. 1090 m), and in Estado Aragua at 
Rancho Grande in Henri Pittier National Park (elev. 1100 m). The Estado 
Miranda sites are in the coastal range of mountains about 30 km south of 
Caracas, while the Estado Aragua site is in the same mountains but 90 km 
to the west. 

The birds were weighed on Pesola spring balances of 10, 50, 100, 300 
and 1000 gramme capacity, usually within 15 minutes of capture. Weights 
less than 100 grammes were recorded to the nearest tenth of a gramme; 
from 100 to 300 grammes to the nearest gramme and above that to the 
nearest 5 grammes. Nearly all netting was done between 7 a.m. and 12 noon 
and no weights are given of known juvenile birds. When I examined the 
birds, I also recorded, for most species, their soft part colours, usually the 
bill, gape, iris, legs and feet, using the Naturalist's Color Guide (Smithe 
1975) in the hand. These colour notes are available for specific birds on 
request from the author. The sequence of species for the weight data follows 
Meyer de Schauensee & Phelps (1978). When samples exceed 7, the number, 
range, mean and standard deviations are given. 

Clark (1979), in his review, reported that bird weights vary due to a 
variety of conditions, but that some evidence suggests that tropical resident 
species' weights vary little seasonally. In Trinidad, Snow & Snow (1963) 

Weights of some recaptured ringed birds in Venezuela 

Capture date Weight Capture date Weight 

(gm) (gm) 

Phacellodomus rufifrons Conopias inornata 

O-O(LA) 18 Jul 1977 25.8 1G-31G 29 Apr 1977 29.5 

6 Jul 1978 26.3 9 Apr 1980 29.0 

4Mari98i 26.6 

W-W(LA) 31 Aug 1977 27.8 RG-16RG ioMayi 9 79 27.6 

27 Dec 1977 26.3 i6Mari98i 28.0 

dB-dB 26Juni979 25.8 YdB-Y3i 13 Apr 1980 29.0 

24 Apr 1 98 1 27.0 i5Mari98i 31.0 

Tachyphonus rufus Arremonops conirostris 

odB-odB(LA) 27 Dec 1977 32.1 dB-dB(LA) 4Mari98i 29.8 

3 Dec 1978 31.5 27 0cti98i 31.5 


[Bull. Brit.Orn. CI. 19 82:10 2(2)] 

found only small seasonal variation in bird weights and that the same 
individuals' weights remained fairly constant; my observations agree with 
both points. Although my data are few, the occasional recapture of birds 
ringed as adults suggests that individuals' weights vary little either with 
season or age (Table 1). The species of birds in Table 1 are not migratory 
and they live exclusively on the same territories throughout the year. 


A comparison of bird weights between some northern neotropical areas 


verreauxi 1 












(Snow & Snow) 

(this paper) 1 


45-5 ±4-65 a 


c? o*48.i ±3-5 

45-55 ±3-73 





N = 4 

N= 3 8 

N= 3 6 


II3.66 ±12.09 



150.97 ±10.12 







N=i 4 

53-25 ±4-35 


61.0 ±4.45 

60.96 ±4.07 



(5 3-67) 



N= 4 

N=i 4 

N= 5 

9.7 ±0.59 

N = 2I 

10.48 ±0.47 


N=i 5 

63.5 ±5.32 


6\J6i.6 ±4-6 

58.47 ±3.81 


(5 5-74-5) 


N = 4 



N = 9 

unsexed 64.7 


N= 54 

N = 2I 

6*6*10.5 ±0.69 


$?9-9 ±0-64 


N = 2 4 

9.16 ±0.61 



33-5 ±4-36 


, 37 -* V 

32.6 ±2.1 

34-75 ±2.35 





N = 4 



N= 5 

49-75 ±3-°9 


52.0 ±1.73 

54.69 ±4.73 




N = 4 

N = 8 

N=2 4 



1 All data combined. 

* Weights given in grammes with standard deviations, range in parentheses. 

8 Talpacoti talpacoti talpacoti in Suriname; T. t. rufipennis in Trinidad and Venezuela. 

4 Leptotila verreauxi brasiliensis in Suriname ; L. v. verreauxi in Trinidad and Venezuela. 

6 Pitangus sulphuratussulpburatus in Suriname ; P. s. trinitatus in Trinidad ; P. /. rufipennis in Venezuela. 

* Tbraupis episcopus episcopus in Suriname ; T. e. nesophila in Trinidad ; T. e. cana in Venezuela. 

Table 2 gives weights for a few birds where comparable data exists, 
although the sample sizes generally are small. With the exception of Turdus 
nudigenis the birds from Suriname appear to be smaller than those from 
Trinidad and Venezuela; the extremes are the 2 continental forms of 'Leptotila 
verreauxi brasiliensis in Suriname, when compared with L. v. verreauxi of 
Venezuela. However, the most significant point is our paucity of data, 
which clearly indicates that much more work must be done in the neotropics 
before such trends can be verified. 

The following weights are of birds from the Venezuelan llanos unless otherwise 
identified; others are from Los Anaucos (LA), Fila Mitana (FM) and Rancho 
Grande (RG). All weights in grammes. 

♦North American migrant ** Austral migrant 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: 102(2)] 5° 

Butorides striatus: unsexed 172.0 

Gampsonyx swainsonii: unsexed 80.5 

Elanoides forficatus: (LA) 9 445 .0 

Buteo magnirostris: (LA) unsexed 224.0 

Jacanajacana: unsexed 108.5 

*Tringa soli/aria: unsexed 43.8 October 

Columbina minuta: 33 33.5, 36.9, 9 9 31.3, 32.6; unsexed 28.7, 29.5, 32.5 

Columbina talpacoti: 13 unsexed 41.5 - 53.0 (45.08 ±3.38); (LA) unsexed 41.5, 44.0, 45.0, 

Scardafella squammata: 1 8 unsexed 48 .0 - 60.0 (5 4. 1 6 ± 3 . 84) ; (LA) unsexed 51.5, 53.8 
Leptotila verreauxi: 11 unsexed 134.0-169.5 (151.50 ±11.05); (LA) unsexed 141.0, 152.5, 

Aratinga pertinax: unsexed 76.8 

Forpus passer inus: % 33 24.3-28.3(25.86 ±1.35), 9 ? 21.5, 23.3, 24.5, 25.0, 26.0 
*Coccy%us americanus: unsexed 5 8.0 April 
Piaya cayana: unsexed 84.0, 92.0, 97.5, 1 10.8 
Crotophaga major: 3 175.0 

Crotophaga sulcirostris: 8 unsexed 47.8-69.0 (5 8.61 ±7.47) 
Nyctidromus albicollis: & 56.0 

Phaethornis augusti: (LA) unsexed 5 .0, 5 .4, 5 .4, 5 . 8 ; (RG) unsexed 5 . 1 
Phaethornis longuemareus: (FM) unsexed 2.6 
Colibri thalassinus: (FM) unsexed 5 . 1 
Chrysolampis mosquitus: c? 3.5 
Chlorostilbon mellisugus: (LA) unsexed 2.3 

Ama^ilia fimbriata: unsexed 4.5, 4.7,4.9,4.9, 5.3, 5.4, 5.5 ; (LA) 8 unsexed 3.5-6.2(4.97 ±0.79) 
Ama^ilia tobaci: (LA) 3.7, 3.7, 4.0, 4.2, 4.5 
Chalybura buffonii: (LA) 3 3 7.0, 7.2, 9 6.3 
Heliodoxa leadbeateri: (FM) <J 7. 1 
Sternoclyta cyanopectus: (FM) 3 8.7 
Coeligena coeligena: (RG) unsexed 8.2 
Aglaiocercus kingi: (RG) 3 5.2 
Chloroceryle americana: 3 26.0 

Chloroceryle aenea: 33 13.0, 13.5, 13.5, 13.8 15.0, 15. 1, $ 9 14.0, 15.0, 15.8, 16.0, 16.8, 16.9 
Galbularuficauda: S3 24.5, 25.5, 25.8, $ 9 25.5, 27.8; (LA) S3 22.6, 22.9, 9921.1,22.6 
Hypnelus ruficollis: 11 unsexed 43.3-57.0 (49.82 ±4.04) 
Picumnus squamulatus: (LA) ££ 10.4, 10.6, 10.7, 10.8, Ii.o, 99.9 
Chrysoptilus punctigula: 33 67.0, 70.0 

Melanerpes rubricapillus: 9 9 43 . 5 , 46. 2, 5 0.7, unsexed 41.5,43.5 
Dendrocinc/afu/iginosa:(FM) unsexed 34.5 
Xiphorhynchus picus: 14 unsexed 35.3-46.8(41.62 ±3.16) 
Xiphorhynchus guttatus: (LA) unsexed 38.1 

Campylorhampbus trochilirostris: unsexed 40.5, 41.0, 44.0; (LA) unsexed 39.0 
Synallaxis albescens: unsexed 11.9, 14.3; (LA) unsexed 12.0, 13.8, 14.5 
Synallaxis cinnamomea: (LA) unsexed 16.6 
Certhiaxis cinnamomea: unsexed 14. 5 
Phacellodomus rufifrons: 22 unsexed 21.5-27.0 (24.50 ±1.42); (LA) 14 unsexed 23.8-27.8 

(24.70 ±1.02) 
T ar aba major: (LK) c? 57.5 
Sakesphorus canadensis: 9 20.0 

Thamnophilus doliatus: (LA) 33 23.6, 25.5, 25.6, 26.3 
Formicivora grisea: 3 11.5 ;(LA) 3 3 9.0, 9.5, 9.9, 10.4 
Myrmeci'za longipes: (LA) <J 27.0, 9 25.1 
Grallariculaferrugineipectus: (LA) <? 1 5 .0 
Chiroxipbia lanceolata: 3 15.1, 9 i4.i;(LA) 9? 17.8, 18.6 
Fluvicolapica: £14.3, 9 n. 9 
Pyocephalus rubinus: 9 13.8 
Machetornis rixosus: unsexed 28.3, 31.3 

Tyrannus melancbolicus: unsexed 33.5, 34.5, 35-o, 38.8, 40.5, 41.5 
Megarbynchus pitangua: unsexed 68.5 
Myio^etetes cayanensis: 1 4 unsexed 22.0-29.5(25.88 ±2.1) 
Myio^etetes similis: 17 unsexed 22.0-28.5 (24.37 ±1.62) 
Conopias inornata [ — Myio^etetes]: 35 unsexed 26.8-33.5 (29.42 ±1.71) 
Pitangus sulphur atus: 15 unsexed 53.5-67.5 (60.96 ±4.07) 

5 1 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 

Pitangus Ik tor: unsexcd 23.5 

Myiarchusferox: unsexed 24.3, 25.6, 25.8 

Myiarchus tyrannulus: 9 unsexed 25.0-30.0(28.25 ±1.72) 

Cnemotriccus fuscatus: (LA) unsexed 11. 5, 11. 6, 13.2 

Myiophobus fasciatus: (LA) unsexed 8.0, 8.3, 8.9, 9.1, 9.9 

Tolmomyias sulphurescens: unsexed 1 5 .0 

Tolmomyias flaviventr is: 11 unsexed 10.5-12.8(11.79 ±.06) 

Todirostrum cinereum: d S 6.4, 6.5, 6.7, 6.8, 7.3, 9 9 6.5, 6.5, 7.2 

Todirostrum sylvia: unsexed 8.5 

Atalotriccus pilaris: (LA) unsexed 5.4, 7.5, 7. 7, 9.1 

Capsiempis flaveola: (LA) unsexed 7.9 

Euscarthmus meloryphus: (LA) unsexed 7.0, 7.5 

Ine^ia subflava: 14 unsexed 7.5-10.2(8.38 ±.63) 

E taenia flavogaster: unsexed 23.8, 24.1, 25.0; (LA) unsexed 21.0, 21.5, 22.3 

**Elaenia parvirostris: unsexed 13.3, 13.8, 13.9, 14.8, 16.3 May-June 

Elaenia cristata: unsexed 1 1.5, 12.0 

Myiopagis viridicata: (LA) unsexed 11.0, 11.6, 11.9, 12.3 

Phaeomyias murina: unsexed 9.8, 10.4, 10.5, 1 1 . 3 ; (LA) unsexed 9.9 

Camptostoma obsoletum: unsexed 6. 9, 7. 5, 7. 5; (LA) unsexed 6.8 

Tyranniscus vilissimus: (LA) unsexed 10. 1 

Leptopogon superciliaris: (LA) unsexed 12.0 

Mionectes olivaceus: (LA) $ 13.8, unsexed 13.0 

Notiochelidon cyanoleuca: (RG) 2 1 unsexed 8.5-10.8 (9.7 ±.59) 

Stelgidopteryx ruficollis: (LA) unsexed 1 5 .0 

*Hirundo rustica: unsexed 16.9 November 

Cyanocoraxyncas: (RG) unsexed 89.0 

Campy lorhyncbus griseus: unsexed 37.0, 38.5, 43.5, 43.6, 45.0, 46.5 

Campy lorhynchus nuchalis: 1 o unsexed 21.1-25.5(23.22 ±1.60) 

Thryothorus rutilus: (LA) unsexed 15.6, 16.3 

Tbryothorus leucotis: unsexed 14.0 

Troglodytes aedon: unsexed 12. 8; (LA) unsexed 12.0, 12.8 

Mimus gilvus: 1 6 unsexed 52.5 -66.0 (58.4 ±4.55) 

*Catbarus minimus: unsexed 30.0, 30.5, November 

T urdus leucomelas: unsexed 53.0, 60.0, 61.5 

Turdus nudigenis: 2 1 unsexed 5 3 .0-66.0 (5 8 .47 ±3.81) 

Polioptila plumbea: $7.0 

Cyclarhis gujanensis: unsexed 25.5, 27.0; (LA) unsexed 25.0, 26.6, 28.2 

Hylophilus aurantiifrons: (LA) unsexed 9.3, 9.8, 10.5 

Hylophilus flavipes: unsexed 1 1.5 ; (LA) unsexed 9.9, 10.5 

Molotbrus bonariensis: (LA) <? 5 3 .0 

Cacicus cela: 16 unsexed 51.2-91.0(61.73 ±11.96) 

Quiscalus lugubris: 9 50.0 

Icterus icterus: unsexed 56.5, 63.0, 84.0; (LA) unsexed 68.0 

Icterus nigrogularis: unsexed 31.0, 33.3, 36.0, 37.0 

Gymnomystax mexicanus: unsexed 93.0 

* Vermivora peregrina: (LA) unsexed 9.4 January 

Dendroica petechia: unsexed 9.0, 9.3 

*Seiurus noveboracensis: unsexed 15.4; (LA) unsexed 15.9 November, October 

Geothlypis aequinoctialis: (LA) $ 13.0 

*Setophaga ruticilla: (LA) 9 9 7.5, 8.5 January, November 

Basileuterus culicivorus: (LA) unsexed 9.4 

Conirostrum speciosum: 9 8.0 

Coereba flaveola: 9 unsexed 8.8-10.5 (9*39 ±-5 5)5 (LA) unsexed 7.9, 8.4, 8.6, 8.9, 9.4, 9.4, 9.5 

Tangara arthus: (RG) unsexed 20.0 

Tangara cayana: (LA) unsexed 19.1 

Tangara cyanoptera: (LA) 9 18.0 

Euphonia trinitatis: <J 1 1 . 5 , 998.8,11.5 

Euphonia laniirostris: (LA) 913.5 

Thraupis episcopus: 10 unsexed 30.0-36.5 (32.78 ±2.01); (LA) unsexed 29.5, 34.0 

Thraupis glaucocolpa: 1 2 unsexed 3 1 . 3-37.3 (3 3 .08 ±2.38) 

Ramphocelus car bo :(LA) 922.0 

Tachyphonus rufus: (LA) <$$ 31.5, 32.0, 32.0, 32.1, 9 9 30.5, 32.0, 32.8, 33.5, 37.5 

Rhodinocichla rosea: (LA) <3 3 43.0, 44.6 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 5 2 

Nemosia pileata: 3 13.5 

Cyanocompsa brissonii [=cyanea]: (LA) <?<? 20.0, 22.3, ? ? 18.9, 19.4, 22.5 

Saltator coerulescens: 21 unsexed 49.0-67.0 (5 4.91 ±5.oi);(LA) unsexed 51.8, 53.0, 54.5 

Saltator orenocensis: unsexed 34.5, 36.8 

Saltator albicollis: (LA) unsexed 37.6 

Paroaria gularis: unsexed 20.8, 21.4, 21.5, 21.8, 22.0, 23.0, 23.8 

Coryphospingus pileatus: $$ 13.8, 14.9, 15.0, 15.8, ? ? 14.3, 15.0 

Arremonops conirostris: (LA) unsexed 24.6, 28.1, 29.0, 29.8, 31.5 

Tiaris bicolor: (LA) ? 10. 5 

Ory^pborus crassirostris: $19.8 

Sporophila intermedia: 12 $$ 11. 2-13. 5 (12.33 ±.81), ?? 11.0, n.3;(LA) 6* 11. 2 

Sporophila nigricollis: (LA) <?c? 8.8, 8.9, 9.1, 9.5, 9.7, 10. o, ? ? 8.5, 9.5, 9.5, 10.0, 10.9, 11.25 

Sporophila obscura: (LA) unsexed 1 1 .4 

Sporophila minuta: (LA) cJ<? 8.0, 8.4 

Volatinia jacarina: 3S 8.0, 8.8, 9.4, 10. o, 10. o, 10. o, 10.3, ? 8.8; (LA) $S 9.2, 9.8, 10.5, 

S kalis flaveola: 21 unsexed 17.0-23.4(19.72 ±1.5); (LA) ? 19.3, unsexed 21.0 
Ammodramus humeralis: unsexed 15.8 
Carduelis psaltria: (LA) <J 10.8, 9 10.2 

Acknowledgements: I thank Tomas Blohm for permission to work on his ranch, Charles 
T. Collins for introducing me to bird netting and handling, as well as for suggestions on 
a draft of this paper, and the Frank M. Chapman Memorial Fund of the American Museum 
of Natural History for support of a field study of which this paper is a by-product. 

References : 

Burton, P. J. K. 1973. Non-passerine bird weights from Colombia and Panama. Bull. 
Brit. Orn. CI. 93 : 1 16-1 18. 

— 1975- Passerine bird weights from Panama and Colombia, with some notes on "soft- 
part" colours. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 95 : 82-86. 

Clark, G. A. 1979. Body weights of birds : a review. Condor 81 : 193-202. 

Collins, C. T. 1972. Weights of some birds of north-central Venezuela. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 

92: 151-153. 
ffrench, R. 1973. A Guide to the Birds of Trinidad and Tobago. Wynnewood, Pa.: Livingston 

Publishing Co. 
Haverschmidt, F. 1948. Bird weights from Surinam. WilsonBull. 60: 230-239. 

— 1952. More bird weights from Surinam. WilsonBull. 64 : 2 3 4-241 . 

— 1968. Birds of Surinam. Edinburgh and London: Oliver & Boyd. 

Meyer de Schauensee, R. & Phelps, W. H. 1978. A Guide to the Birds of Venezuela. Princeton, 

N. J. : Princeton University Press. 
Miller, A. H. 1947. The tropical avifauna of the upper Magdalena Valley, Colombia. Auk 

Russell, S. M., Barlow, J. C. & Lamm, D. W. 1979. Status of some birds on Isla San 

Andres and Isla Providencia, Colombia. Condor 81 : 98-100. 
Smithe, F. B. 1975. Naturalist' 's Color Guide. New York: Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 
Snow, D. W. & Snow, B. K. 1963. Weights and wing-lengths of some Trinidad birds. 

Zoo logic a 48: 1 - 1 2 . 
Thomas, B. T. 1979. The birds of a ranch in the Venezuelan llanos. In Vertebrate Ecology 

of the Northern Neotropics (J. F. Eisenberg, Ed.) Washington, D.C. : Smithsonian 


Address: Betsy Trent Thomas, Apartado 80844, Caracas 1080-A, Venezuela. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1982 

Eleven bird species new to Bolivia 

by Thomas S. Schulenberg and J. V. Remsen, Jr. 

Recieved 2j September 1981 

Fieldwork conducted by the authors in the Departamento de La Paz, Bolivia, 
in 1 98 1, produced specimens of 9 bird species not previously recorded from 
the country and 2 bird species previously known from Bolivia from sight 

53 [Bull. Brit.Orn.Cl. 1982: 102(2)] 

records only. Two localities were visited: (1) humid, hilly tropical forest 
bordering the upper Rio Beni, about 20 km by river north of Puerto Linares, 
(c. i5°24'S, 67°3 3'W) at 600 m, 5 June-8 July, and (2) humid Temperate 
Zone cloud forest 1 km south of Chuspipata at 3050 m, 23 July- 10 August; 
Chuspipata (i6°i3'S, 67°$ i'W) is the name of the pass between Unduavi and 
Yolosa on the La Paz-Caranavi highway. 

laterallus exilis Grey-breasted Crake 

Four specimens were collected at our Rio Beni site: 3 by S. M. Lanyon 
(LSUMZ 101655, 20 June, $, ovary 10 x 4 mm, largest ova 1.5 x 1.5 mm, 
skull 50% oss., 37 g, heavy fat; LSUMZ 101656, 24 June, ?, ovary 10 x 5 
mm, largest ova 1 x 1 mm, 43 g, heavy fat; LSUMZ 101243 (skeleton), 
24 June, $, ovary 10x4 mm, largest ova 1 x 1 mm, 36 g, light fat) and 1 by 
Remsen (LSUMZ 101657, 30 June, testes 4x3 mm, 39 g, light fat, heavy 
body moult). Soft part colours were very similar to those given by Haver- 
schmidt (1974), including an area of green, not mentioned by Ripley (1977), 
at the base of the otherwise dark upper mandible. All were collected in a 
large (c. 1 x \ km), wet, grassy pasture with scattered bushes, where they 
were rather common and easily seen, often landing temporarily in small 
bushes after flushing. The song, similar to that of L. melanophaius^ was an 
explosive, dry, descending trill lasting about 2 seconds. L. melanophaius (2 
specimens collected) also inhabited this pasture, but in smaller numbers; it 
was apparently more restricted to marsh grasses surrounding small pools and 
ditches with standing water. 

L. exilis was previously known from scattered localities from Belize to 
Panama and much of northern South America (Meyer de Schauensee 1966, 
Blake 1977, Ripley 1977). Our Bolivia specimens are approximately halfway 
between the nearest previous locality to the north, the Rio Ucayali area of 
Peru (Hellmayr & Conover 1942) and a recently reported record for Paraguay 
(Storer 1981). 

caprimulgus sericocaudatus Silky-tailed Nightjar 

Two specimens were collected at our Rio Beni site: one by A. P. Capparella 
on 18 June (LSUMZ 101698,^, ovary 3x2 mm, ova minute, 66 g) ; and one by 
Schulenberg on 4 July (LSUMZ 101699, <$, testes 4x2 mm, 62 g). Both were 
flushed during the day from on or near the ground in mature, hilly tropical 

This rare species was known from only a few scattered localities in lowland 
South America, the nearest to our site being c. 1 200 km to the northwest at 
Yarinacocha, Dpto. Loreto, Peru (Dickerman 1975). Our specimens can be 
referred to the race mengeli (R. W. Dickerman, in litt.), previously known from 
only 3 specimens, all from Yarinacocha. 

nonnula ruficapilla Grey-cheeked Nunlet 

Between 22 and 29 June, 4 specimens were netted at our Rio Beni site: 
LSUMZ ioi85 8-ioi86i;3 ??, 1 sex unknown, none in breeding condition, 
2 with head and body moult, 2 without, insects in all 4 stomachs. All speci- 
mens and most of our few sight records were from the vicinity of bamboo 
thickets near the river. D. Wiedenfeld (pers. comm.) saw a pair once in hilly 
forest undergrowth above the river, and Schulenberg saw a single in dense 
undergrowth along a stream bed in hilly forest. 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 54 

N. ruficapilla was previously known from eastern Panama and northern 
Colombia (N. r. frontalis and pallescens) and from eastern Peru and western 
Brazil (N. r. ruficapilla). The nearest specimen records to our Bolivia site are 
from the mouth of the Rio La Torre, south bank of the Rio Tambopata, Dpto. 
Madre de Dios, Peru (LSUMZ 9201 1, 98190-98192, 99592), c. 400 km to the 
northwest. As this species is not easily detected without use of mist-nets, it is 
likely that it will eventually be found throughout northern Bolivia in 
appropriate habitat (river-edge bamboo thickets). 

eubucco richardsoni Lemon-tnroated Barbet 

This species was seen or heard almost daily at our Rio Beni site. Schulen- 
berg collected 2 specimens: LSUMZ 101867, 9 June, 9, ovary 5 x 3 mm, 
ova minute, skull 50% ossified, 32 g, light fat, moderate body moult; 
LSUMZ 101868, 5 July, (J, testes 4x2 mm, skull oss., 40 g, moderate fat, 
light body moult. The stomachs of both contained fruit parts, but on 6 
occasions, individuals were seen picking apart dead leaves or rotting wood 
in search of (presumably) insects, much in the manner of E. versicolor (Remsen, 
pers. obs.). E. richardsoni was always seen singly or in pairs in canopy flocks of 
tanagers. The song was very similar to the low-pitched, far-carrying, 1-2 
second trill of E. versicolor, but was broken into several 2-parted segments 
rather than being a continuous stream of notes. 

E. richardsoni is widespread in western Amazonia (Meyer de Schauensee 
1966) and its presence in northern Bolivia was not surprising; Schulenberg 
and others have seen it on the Peruvian bank of the Rio Heath, Dpto. Madre 
de Dios, and at the mouth of the Rio La Torre, south bank of the Rio 
Tambopata, Dpto. Madre de Dios, c. 3 50 and 400 km, respectively, northwest 
of our Bolivia site. 

ancistrops strigilatus Chestnut- winged Hookbill 

This species was noted on 5 occasions in canopy mixed-species flocks at our 
Rio Beni site. One specimen was netted: LSUMZ 102020, 15 June, ^, testes 
3x2 mm, 3 5 g, light fat, skull ossified. With specimens of this widespread 
Amazonia species known from the Peruvian bank of the Rio Heath, Dpto. 
Madre de Dios (LSUMZ 84707-84708) and the mouth of the Rio La Torre, 
south bank of the Rio Tambopata, Dpto. Madre de Dios (LSUMZ 92279), 
c. 3 5 o and 400 km, respectively, northwest of our Bolivia site, its presence in 
Bolivia is not surprising. 

hyloctistes subulatus Striped Woodhaunter 

Two specimens were netted at our Rio Beni site: LSUMZ 102021, 22 June, 
cJ, testes 7x3 mm, 30 g, no fat, skull oss., and LSUMZ 102022, 30 June, $, 
ovary 6x4 mm, ova minute, 23.8 g, no fat, skull 75% oss. ; stomachs of both 
contained insects, including beetles. This secretive bird was not observed in 
the field at this locality. 

Specimens of this widespread Amazonian species have been taken c. 400 km 
northwest of our site, at the mouth of Rio La Torre, south bank of Rio 
Tambopata, Dpto. Madre de Dios (LSUMZ 87867, 92278); thus its presence 
in Bolivia was to be expected. 

grallaricula ferrugineipectus Rusty-breasted Antpitta 

Five specimens (LSUMZ 102249-102253) were obtained (2 collected by 
Schulenberg and 3 netted) in humid forest 1 km south of Chuspipata at 

5 5 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 

2850-3050 m, 27 July-9 August. The specimens, all adults (3 <$£, 29$) 
ranged in weight from 1 5 to 1 8 g, none was in reproductive condition, and 
all had insects in their stomachs. 

The nearest previously reported records are from Cordillera Vilcabamba, 
Dpto. Cuzco, Peru (Weske 1972), c. 700 km northwest of our site. Our 
Bolivia specimens closely resemble a series of 43 specimens (LSUMZ) from 
Dpto. Amazonas south to Dpto. Huanuco, Peru, but differ slightly in show- 
ing a tendency towards greyer crowns, more olive mantles, and reduced 
loral spots. 

tachycineta leucopyga Chilean Swallow 

At our Rio Beni site, on 24 June, Remsen found, and Schulenberg col- 
lected, a specimen of this species as it foraged with 200 Notiochelidon cyanoleuca 
over the large pasture in which the Lateral/us exilis specimens were obtained 
(see above). The bird (LSUMZ 1 02971) was a 9 (ovary 4x2 mm, ova minute, 
15.5 g, moderate fat). This appears to be the first incontrovertible record of 
Tachycineta leucopyga for Bolivia. 

This swallow breeds in southern Chile and Argentina; wintering birds 
migrate north to northern Argentina, Paraguay, and southern Brazil. Meyer 
de Schauensee (1966:393) states that it may winter "possibly also in Bolivia 
(Falls of the Rio Madeira?, cf. Olrog, Opera Lilloana 19, 1963)", but we can 
find no reference to this species in Olrog (1963). Allen (1889) reported that 
Rusby collected a Bolivian specimen on the Falls of the Madeira. Hellmayr 
(1932:430) believed that some of Rusby's specimen labels were transposed, 
and questioned Rusby's Bolivian record of Tachycineta leucopyga (Hellmayr 
1935). We know of no other references to this species for Bolivia. 

ramphocaenus melanurus Long-billed Gnatwren 

This species was recorded regularly in small numbers at our Rio Beni site. 
Schulenberg collected 2 singing males: LSUMZ 102857, 16 June, cJ, testes 
1 x 1 mm, 11. 5 g, light fat; LSUMZ 102858, 27 June, ^, testes 2x1 mm, 11 g, 
little fat. Both had ossified skulls, insects in their stomachs, and showed 
moderate body moult. All observations came from hilly forest with extensive 
areas of dense vine tangles that extended from near the canopy (20-30 m) to 
near the ground. Gnatwrens were seen from 3 to 20 m above the ground in 
these tangles. In such situations the birds were difficult to observe, and were 
most readily located by their persistent song. The song is a very loud, slightly 
descending trill that lasts c. 1 sec, given at about 10 sec intervals and c. 10-20 
times in succession. 

The presence of R. melanurus in Bolivia was to be expected, as it is known 
from the upper Rio Madeira (Zimmer 1937) and upper Rio Purus (Gylden- 
stolpe 195 1). The closest previous locality was 105 km west of Puerto 
Maldonado, Dpto. Madre de Dios, Peru (LSUMZ 78994-78995), c. 450 km 
northwest of our Rio Beni site. 

caryothraustes humeralis Yellow-shouldered Grosbeak 

This species was noted regularly at our Rio Beni site in canopy flocks of 
tanagers. Two specimens were collected by Remsen: LSUMZ (102967, 
1 July, ?, ovary 6x3 mm, ova minute, 31 g, no fat; LSUMZ 102968, 2 July, 
cJ, testes 2x2 mm, 37 g, no fat. The stomachs of both contained insects and 
that of the male also contained a few seeds (LSUMZ Stomach Contents 

[Bull. Br it. Orn. CI. 19 82:10 2(2)] 5 6 

Collection). This species was always noted high (20-40 m) above ground in 
mixed-species flocks in mature forest, most frequently in rather open, 
sparsely-foliated trees in which it gleaned insects from the undersides of 
leaves with slow, deliberate movements (although one hover-glean was 
recorded). The call note was a loud, clear, sweet "suweeet" with rising 
inflection, resembling in quality the call notes of many Tangara species with 
which it flocks. 

This species was known only from "Bogota" trade skins, one locality in 
eastern Ecuador, one in extreme western Brazil (Paynter 1970), 2 in southern 
Peru (Parker & O'Neill 1980, T. A. Parker ms.), and Remsen's sight records 
from Dpto. Cochabamba, Bolivia (Remsen & Ridgely 1980). 

hemispingus xanthophthalmus Drab Hemispingus 

This species was noted daily in tall, humid forest 1 km south of Chuspipata 
at 3050 m. Six specimens (3 of each sex, LSUMZ 103024-103029) were 
collected (3 by Schulenberg, 2 by Remsen, 1 by S. M. Lanyon). Mean body 
weight was 11.3 g and the only bird in reproductive condition was a male 
with testes 5x3 mm; all stomachs contained insects. Our Bolivian series does 
not differ in any consistent way from the LSUMZ series (N=28) from Peru. 

H. xanthophthalmus was previously known from Bolivia from sight records 
from this same locality (Parker et al. 1979). In 1980, specimens were collected 
by Schulenberg and L. C. Binford near the Peru-Bolivia border at Valcon, 
5 km NNW of Quiaca, Dpto. Puno, Peru at 3000 m (LSUMZ 98804-98808), 
bridging the gap between our Bolivia site and previously published records 
from Dpto. Cuzco, Peru (Meyer de Schauensee 1966, Parker & O'Neill 

Acknowledgements: We are grateful to the Direccion de Ciencia y Tecnologia and to the 
Academia Nacional de Ciencias for permission to work in Bolivia. We thank Gaston 
Bejarano, Ovidio Suarez Morales, Antonio Saavedra Munos, and J. Solomon 
for invaluable assistance in Bolivia. We wish to express our appreciation to our field 
companions in Bolivia in 198 1: A. P. Capparella, S. M. Lanyon, M. Sanchez S., and 
D. Wiedenfeld. Mrs. B. Odom, Mr. J. S. Mcllhenny and H. I. and L. Schweppe 
supported our fieldwork in Bolivia. M. A. Traylor helped to clarify the history of the previous 
reports of Tachycineta leucopyga from Bolivia. R. W. Dickerman identified our specimens of 
Caprimulgus sericocaudatus mengeli. 

References : 

Allen, J. A. 1889. List of the birds collected in Bolivia by Dr. H. H. Rusby, with field notes 

by the collector.^//. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 2 : 77-112. 
Blake, E. R. 1977. Manual of Neotropical Birds, Vol. 1. Chicago and London: University of 

Chicago Press. 
Dickerman, R. W. 1975. New subspecies of Caprimulgus sericocaudatus from the Amazon 

River Basin. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 95 : 18-19. 
Gyldenstolpe, N. 195 1. The ornithology of the Rio Purus region in western Brazil. Arkiv. 

Zool. 2: 1-320. 
Haverschmidt, F. 1 974. Notes on the Grey-breasted Crake Laterallus exilis. Bull. Brit. Orn. 

CI. 94: 2-3. 
Hellmayr, C. E. 1932. TheBirds of Chile. Field Mus. Nat. Hist., Zool. Series 19: 1-472. 

— 1935- Catalogue of Birds of the Americas. Part 8. Field Mus. Nat. Hist., Zool. Series 

13: 1-541. 
Hellmayr, C. E. & Conover, B. 1942. Catalogue of Birds of the Americas. Part 1, No. 1. Field 

Mus. Nat. Hist., Zool. Series 13 : 1-636. 
Meyer de Schauensee, R. 1966. The Species of Birds of South America. Narberth, Pennsylvania: 

Livingston Publ. Co. 
Olrog, C. C. 1963. Notas sobre aves Bolivianas. Acta. Zool. Lilloana 19 : 407-478. 
Parker, T. A. Ill & O'Neill, J. P. 1980. Notes on little known birds of the upper Urubamba 

Valley, southern Peru. Auk 97 : 167-176. 

5 7 [Bull. Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 

Parker, T. A. Ill, Remsen, J. V. Jr. & Heindel, J. A. 1980. Seven bird species new to 

Boliviz.Bull.Brit.Om.Cl. 100: 160-162. 
Paynter, R. A. Jr. 1970. Subfamily Cardinalinae, p. 216-245 mChecklist of Birds of the World, 

Vol. XIII, Paynter, R. A., Jr. & R. W. Storer (Eds). Cambridge, Mass: Museum of 

Comparative Zoology. 
Remsen, J. V. Jr. & Ridgely, R. S. 1980. Additions to the avifauna of Bolivia. Condor 82: 

Ripley, S. D. 1977. Rails of the World. Boston: David R. Godine. 
Storer, R. W. 1981. The rufous-faced crake (Laterallus xenopterus) and its Paraguayan 

congeners. WilsonBull. 93: 137-144. 
Weske, J. S. 1972. The distribution of the avifauna in the Apurimac Valley of Peru with 

respect to environmental gradients, habitat, and related species. Unpublished Ph.D. 

thesis, Norman, Oklahoma : Univ. Oklahoma. 
Zimmer, J. T. 1937. Studies of Peruvian birds. No. 25. Notes on the genera Thamnophilus, 

Thamnocharis, Gymnopithys, and Ramphocoaenus. Amer. Mus. Novit. 917 : 1-16. 

Address: T. S. Schulenberg and J. V. Remsen, Jr., Museum of Zoology, Louisiana State 
University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70893 USA. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

Biological species limits in the Cettia fortipes complex 

by D. R. Wells 

Received 2j September 1? 81 

On classical museum characters alone sections of the genus Cettia {sensu 
Delacour 1942-43) are among the trickiest of all sylviine warblers to identify. 
Their subdued brown plumages seem bereft of characters that could function 
as recognition marks in nature and visual cues may rank subordinate to 
signals of other kinds, such as vocalisations. Descriptions of Cettia songs in 
the literature (Ali & Ripley 1973, King et al. 1975, Neufeldt 1971, Smythies 
1953) suggest a diversity well up to the sylviine average and a tendency also 
to unusual, arresting quality, confirmed in those described here. Through 
experiments with tape-recordings (this study; J. L. Gulledge, in lift.), songs 
have been shown to be important for territorial advertisement in the C. 
fortipes group, and among birds whose extreme skulking behaviour must 
reduce most visual contact to close-range encounters in dim light, they 
could also promote reproductive isolation. A taxonomic value is indicated 
(Lanyon 1969) and though I have found no reference to previous applications 
in Cettia, Dowsett & Stjernstedt (1979) have recently used song patterns to 
help resolve species limits in the related Bradypterus. 

Delacour's reviews of these genera united under the name Cettia fortipes 
(Hodgson) the marginally tropical Sino-Himalayan bush warblers C. f. 
fortipes, pallidus and davidianus with 6 forms: oreophila, banksi, sepiaria, 
flaviventris {=sumatrana), vulcania (=montand) and everetti of the Sunda- 
Wallacea archipelago, linked via a small suite of morphometrical characters 
and seen as varying mainly in colour intensity with latitude. There are 
relatively few published natural history observations on any of these forms, 
especially from the southern range, but all those for which data are recorded 
do appear to select equivalent habitats, close to the ground in dense elfin 
forest, low thickets or rank herbage, always above 1000-2000 m altitude 
(e.g. Ali & Ripley 1973, Chasen & Hoogerwerf 1941). On Timur the 
endemic everetti is exceptional in having been collected from above 1 5 00 m 

{BulLBrit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 5 8 

down to 150 m (Mayr 1944, AMNH), at times of year when seasonal shifts 
of altitude range would not have been expected. 

An insular niche-release of this type might have influenced dispersal 
locally, but most spread by the group has probably involved chance hopping 
between upland habitat-islands. With decreasing latitude, the continental 
Southeast Asian mountain summits nevertheless soon lose the appropriate 
indigenous vegetation zone (cf. Robbins & Smitinand 1966) and only in the 
Malay Peninsula does montane elfin forest reappear, at an altitude determined 
by the perhumid maritime climate. It closely resembles habitat now occupied 
in the Greater Sunda islands, but may not have been so continuously 
available because of the past situation of the Peninsula in the interior of a, 
now drowned, Pleistocene Sunda continent. Former Malayan populations, if 
they ever existed, could then have been eliminated through lack of refugia in 
the form of sufficiently high massifs and/or areas of mountain vegetation 
modified by vulcanism as in Indonesia. Assuming no other dispersal route, 
therefore, north-south gene-flow may have been hindered over a long peri- 
od, and Delacour's inclusive arrangement accords poorly with the finding 
that, despite appearance and ecology, Sino-Himalayan and at least some 
Sunda-Wallacean forms possess sharply different songs. 

New data here on vocalisations are drawn from my own field-notes and 
recordings and the tape collections of Dr. J. T. Marshall and the Cornell 
University Library of Natural Sounds. Representative cuts from tapes of 
pallidus in Kashmir and NW Frontier province, Pakistan, oifortipes in eastern 
Nepal, davidianus on Taiwan, oreophila on Mt Kinabalu, northwestern Borneo, 
and vulcania on Mt Pangrango, western Java, were sonographed. A com- 
parative series of wide-band sonograms is given in Figure 1 and basic acoustic 
measurements are summarised in Table I. 

The Sino-Himalayan forms, pallidus, fortipes and davidianus, all open with a 
held note of increasing energy but even pitch, at between about 1.5 and 
3.2 KHz. This is followed immediately by an explosive pulse of brief, 
strongly modulated notes varying in number inversely with the length of the 
held note so that the full phrase is of fairly constant duration: 1640-2 120 ms 
in Pakistan and 1 480-1 930 ms on Taiwan, at opposite longitudinal extremes 
of the range. Verbalisations cited by Ali & Ripley (1973) for pallidus and 
fortipes: 'he'll . . . beat-you\ 'wheeeeee . . . chin>iyou\ etc., fit my own impression 
oifortipes found in garden thickets at Darjeeling in late March 1971, when I 
noted down a song 2.speeee . . .piui. 

Individual songs in Borneo and Java are shorter by up to one second and 
are a continuous whine, frequency-modulated throughout, with a sub- 
terminal crescendo that varies in shape but always spans a lesser range of 
frequencies than the explosive pulse of the northern song. Those of oreophila 
heard and taped on Mt Kinabalu in April 1975 typically opened with a brief 
grace-note, evident in the sonograms and loudest at about 4 KHz. This is 
represented by the first syllable of the verbalisation 'witch-a-wee-cheee-wee* 
given by Smythies (198 1), which mistakenly fragments the succeeding whine 
but still gives a fair total impression of the oreophila song. In April 1978 
entirely similar sounding vocalisations, as yet unsonographed, were taped in 
elfin forest on the upper slopes of Mt Mulu, type locality of banksi, in north 

The limited tape and sonograph material of vulcania from west Java 

KH Z 4 

KH Z 4 


(a) _ 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: 102(2)] 














04 08 12 1-6 2.I 




KH Z 4 - 









Fig. 1 a. Broad band-width sonograms of sample songs in the Cettia fortipes complex: (a) 
and (b) pallidus (Kagan and Sind valleys, Pakistan), (c) fortipes (Arun valley, Nepal), 
(d) and (e) davidianus (Taiwan). 

(f)-(i) oreophila (variants from the repertoire of one individual on Mount Kinabalu, 
Sabah), (j) and (k) vulcania (Mount Pangrango, Java). 

includes no songs with an introductory grace-note but this song form does 
occur within the range of vulcania on Bali. Thus a bird seen at Kintamani, 
central highlands, on 17 April 1973 gave a song which I noted down at the 
time as chee-ku-ueeeoo, 2. five-part impression directly equatable with Smythies' 
description from Kinabalu. Such a difference could be dialectic at most - and 
just as these Sunda island songs show a high degree of relatedness, so the 
contrasting Sino-Himalayan song has survived isolation on Taiwan in at 
least equivalent detail (Fig. 1). In all instances geographical contact may 
have been lost by the end of the Pleistocene and the internal consistency of 

[Bull. Brit.Orn.Cl. 19 82: 102(2)] 


Table i 
Some acoustic measurements of songs by bush warblers in the Cettia fortipes complex 

Number of 

First note 

Full phrase 


notes 1 



Frequency (KHz) 




Base Peak Span 


one (3) 

1 160-1280 

2.5 3-8-3-9 1. 3-1-4 


one (8) 



2.3-3.0 4.5-5.2 1.5-2.6 


three (4) 

1 200-1400 

1 640- 1 820 

1.8-2. 1 5.2-6.4 3.4-4.4 

five (4) 


1 780-2 1 20 

1. 8-2. 1 5.4-6.0 3.6-4.1 


four (2) 

1 5 80-1640 


1. 5-1.8 5.3-5.8 3.8-4.1 


three (4) 

1 060- 1 540 


1. 5-1.9 4.0-5.5 2.6-3.7 

four (1) 



2.1 4.7 2.6 

Excluding introductory grace-notes. 



e 55 




(a) (b) (c) (d) (e) (f) (g) (h) (i) 

6 8 6 7 12 7 15 3 7 

b X 100 


4 5 10 4 10 7 13 9 5 

Fig. 2. Morphometric differences in the Cettia fortipes complex. 

a. Male (upper column) and female (lower column) wing-length ranges, and 

b. Wing-length/tail-length indices (range and mean) : 

(a) pallidas, (b) fortipes, (c) davidianus, (d) palawana, (e) oreophila, (f ) everetti, (g) vulcania, (h) 
flaviventris and (i) sepiaria. Sample sizes are given opposite relevant ranges. 

the 2 song patterns, each traversing a minimum 3 named morphological 
forms, implies an important genetic break. 

Two small and unrelated morphometrical differences match this break. 
Male and female wing-length ranges were found to be separated by gaps of 
3.5-4.5 mm in samples of the Sino-Himalayan forms, but were contiguous 
to broadly overlapping in 6 Sunda-Wallacean forms measured (Fig. 2a), 
including the recently discovered Philippine palawana. A wing-length :tail- 
length ratio (W/T x 100) likewise sorted 91 out of 99 specimens in the combin- 
ed measurable sample (other than from Sumatra) to above or below value 100, 

61 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)} 

respectively, for Sino-Himalayan and Sunda-Wallacean groupings (Fig. 2b). 
Samples of 11 flaviventris, including the type (Violani 1980) from southern 
Sumatra, and 8 sepiaria from Mt Leuser in Aceh province were intermediate 
on this second character. 

For these various reasons it is suggested that Cettia fortipes as constituted 
by Delacour is a probable composite, most sensibly restricted to include, of 
the named forms, only pallidus, fortipes and davidianus. These replace each other 
west to east in the Himalayan, north Burmese (Thailand) and south China 
uplands, from Pakistan to Taiwan. Records on conjoined hill-tracts in 
northern Vietnam, northern Laos and the Sittang- Sal ween divide at Nattaung 
peak (18 49 'N) (BMNH, King et al. 1975) probably also refer to this species, 
and could include an additional subspecies (Smith et al. 1944), though this 
has never been formally described. The specimen in question, from Nattaung, 
was collected in long grass fringing a hill road and no habitat now occupied 
that far south in continental Asia is likely to pre-date clearance of the 
mountain forest by man. Status there is uncertain. 

It follows from this action that an additional species must be recognised 
to accommodate, in the first instance, oreophila and banksi of Borneo and 
vulcania of Java and Bali as agreeing on a combination of characters including 
distinctive vocalisations, or on these vocalisations alone. The position of the 
Lombok island population of vulcania, east of Bali, is problematical in that 
only 2 specimens were measured and its song is unknown; indeed, there are 
no records subsequent to the original collection of a century ago. Sumatran 
forms, palawana of Mt Mantalingajan, Palawan island, and everetti from 
Timur likewise conform on one or both of the morphometric characters, but 
until their songs are described can be only provisionally allocated to this 
second species. 

The name adopted for it must be Cettia vulcania (Blyth) 1870 Java if under 
Article 1 1 of the International Code it is accepted that, as first describer, 
Blyth acquired authorship of a manuscript name he himself attributed to 
Solomon Miiller (Delacour 1947). As pointed out by others (e.g. Phillips 
1968) the more widely used name for the Javan bird, montana Horsfield 1821, 
is a primary homonym of Sylvia montana Wilson 1812, applied to a parulid 

'Strong-footed Bush Warbler* remains valid as a vernacular name for the 
Sino-Himalayan species since it was coined for nominate fortipes prior to 
Delacour's revision. 'Muller's Bush Warbler' is proposed as a new and 
suitably commemorative name for C. vulcania. Other recent English names 
apply across species and should be abandoned for this reason. 

Acknowledgements: Particular thanks are due to Dr J. L. Gulledge for making available 
material in the Cornell University Library of Natural Sounds and for producing the sono- 
grams. Study specimens were borrowed through the courtesy of the Philadelphia Academy 
of Natural Sciences, the British Museum (Natural History) (BMNH), the Rijksmuseum van 
Natuurlijke Historie, Leiden, and Muzium Sarawak, Kuching. Mrs Mary LeCroy, Professor 
C. G. Sibley, and Drs A. L. Mack and D. M. Miles sent additional data from collections in 
their charge. Dr G. F. Mees, Dr K. C. Parkes, Mr E. C. Dickinson and Dr J. T. Marshall 
made valuable comments at various stages, and Dr Marshall also supplied the crucial tape 
from Java. 

References : 

Ali, S. & Ripley, S. D. 1973. Handbook of the Birds of India and Pakistan. Vol. 8. Oxford 
University Press : Bombay. 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: 102(2)} 62 

Chasen, F. N. & Hoogerwerf, A. 1941. The birds of the Netherlands/Indian Mt. Leuser 

expedition 1937 to north Sumatra. Treubia 18 (suppl.): 1-131. 
Delacour, J. 1942-43. The bush-warblers of the genera Cettia and Bradypterus, with notes on 

allied genera and species. Ibis%^\ 509-519; 85 : 27-40. 
— 1947. The name of the Javanese Bush Warbler. Auk 64: 129. 
Dowsett, R. J. & Stjernstedt, R. 1979. The Bradypterus cinnamomeus-mariae complex in 

Central Africa.. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 99 : 86-94. 
King, B. F., Woodcock, M. W. & Dickinson, E. C. 1975. A Field Guide to the Birds of 

South-east Asia. Collins : London. 
Lanyon, W. E. 1969. Vocal characters and avian systematics. In Hinde, R. A. (ed.),Bird 

Vocalisations. Cambridge University Press : Cambridge. 
Mayr, E. 1944. The birds of Timor and Sumba.. Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 83 : 123-194. 
Neufeldt, I. A. 1971. Der Kutzfiugehanget Horeites diphone (Kittlitz). Der Falke 18: 364-375. 
Phillips, A. R. 1968. Cettia montana versus C.fortipes (Aves : Sylviinae). /. Bombay Nat. Hist. 

Soc. 65 : 223-224. 
Robbins, R. G. & Smitinand, T. 1966. A botanical ascent of Doi Inthanond. Nat. Hist. 

Bull. Siam Soc. 21 : 205-227. 
Smith, H. C, Garthwaithe, P. F. & Smythies, B. E. 1944. On the birds of the Karen Hills 

and Karenni found over 3,000 feet. Paitll. J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc. 44: 60-72. 
Smythies, B. E. 1953. The Birds oj r Burma. 2nd Edn. Oliver & Boyd: Edinburgh. 
— 1 98 1. The Birds of Borneo. 3rd Edn. (ed. The Earl of Cranbrook). The Malayan Nature 

Society and Sabah Society, Kuala Lumpur. 
Violani, C. 1980. 'What is Brachypteryx flaviventris Salvadori?" Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 100: 


Address: Dr David Wells, Zoology Department, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 
22-11. Malaysia. 

©British Ornithologists' Club. 1982. 

A confirmation of the specific relations of 
Cuculus saturatus insulindae Hartert 

by D. R. Wells 

Received 2j September 1981 

Becking (1975) and Wells & Becking (1975) invoked details of plumage, 
beak morphology, egg-shell appearance and ultrastructure, vocalisations and 
brood parasitism to show that C. lepidus, a small Cuculus resident in montane 
forests from Sumatra and peninsular Malaysia to the Lesser Sunda islands, 
is a diminutive Oriental Cuckoo C. saturatus and not, as widely assumed, a 
subspecies of C. poliocephalus. The eggs and brood hosts of a similar Bornean 
cuckoo, insulindae, are unknown but the few specimens examined in the above 
study shared critical morphology and plumage characters with both lepidus 
and northern subspecies of C. saturatus. C. insulindae was tentatively transfer- 
red to saturatus after taking into account the additio nalevidence of vocaliza- 
tions commonly heard on Mount Kinabalu, Sabah, in February-March 
(Smythies 1959) and an evidently similar sound described on the label of a 
specimen from Kinabalu in the collection of the Sarawak Museum, Kuching. 
During a visit to Kinabalu National Park 28-30 March 1975 I was able to 
satisfy myself that these vocalisations were one and the same. A lepidus-like. 
call was heard repeatedly in lower montane forest at around 1 500 m altitude. 
It was tape-recorded and the calling bird attracted to a play-back proved, as 
guessed, to be a small Cuculus fitting the description of insulindae. In April 1978 
identical calls were heard at around 1300 m on Mount Mulu, Sarawak, 
about 180 miles SW of Kinabalu. 

63 \Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 


H z 500 


i 1 i i 

25 5 075 


Fig. 1 . Wide band-width sonogram of a call oiCuculus insulindae from Mount Kinabalu, Sabah. 

A section of the Kinabalu tape was sonographed in wide-band mode 
(300 cps), and the sonogram of one sample call is drawn in Figure 1. 
It is substantially like that of lepidus, and utterly different from any authenti- 
cated call of poliocephalus (Wells & Becking 1975). The interval between the 
main energy pulses of notes one and two is 190 ms (200-230 ms in lepidus), 
the duration of the individual second and third notes is 170-200 ms (140- 
160 ms in lepidus), and their main energy is concentrated at 500 Hz (510- 
540 Hz in lepidus). A steady rate of 27-28 calls per minute compares with 
21-23 by lepidus in Java and 24-28 by C.s. saturatus in Nepal. It differs from 
lepidus only in that note one is pitched even with the rest of the phrase, as in 
C.s. horsfieldi (Wells & Becking 1975, plate 22), and the interval between notes 
two and three is briefer, deviations slight enough to be treated as dialectic 

Vocalisations therefore support the morphological evidence for identifying 
insulindae as a further subspecies oiCuculus saturatus. 

Acknowledgement: I am grateful to Dr. J. L. Gulledge who made the sonogram at the 
Library of Natural Sounds, Ornithology Laboratory, Cornell University. 

References : 

Becking, J. H. 1975. New Evidence of the specific affinity oiCuculus lepidus Miiller. Ibis 

Smythies, B. E. 1959. Bird notes from Mt. Kinabalu. Sarawak Mus. J. 9: 257-262. 
Wells, D. R. & Becking, J. H. 1975. Vocalizations and status of Little and Himalayan 

cuckoos, Cuculus poliocephalus and C. saturatus, in Southeast Asia. Ibis 117:3 66-3 7 1 . 

Address: Dr. David Wells, Zoology Department, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982 

Behavioural and distributional notes on some unusual 
birds of a lower montane cloud forest in Peru 

by Theodore A. Parker, III and Susan Allen Parker 

Received 19 September 1981 

From 30 August to 15 September 1977 we camped at 1100m in lower 
montane forest along the recently constructed Bagua-Pomacochas-Rioja 
highway, near "Afluente," about 80 road km northwest of Rioja, Dpto. San 
Martin. Parker & Parker (1980) give a description of this locality and 
information on the rarest species found by us there, Xenerpestes singularis. 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 64 

Our field work was carried out in c. 4 km 2 of tall, mossy forest and in second 
growth around the edge of a 6 hectare man-made clearing, between 1000 and 
1300m. 168 bird species (including 4 new to Peru) were found in this small 
area, many of them poorly known and rare in collections. Of this total, at 
least 30 species were not found outside the elevational limits given above and 
thus are particularly susceptible to the rapid destruction of forest taking 
place along the lower slopes of the Andes from Venezuela to Bolivia. The 
greatest dangers to this habitat come from tea cultivation and slash-and-burn 

In this paper we briefly comment on some of the species restricted to this 
narrow "Upper Tropical Zone," and give previously unpublished specimen 
data (Table 1) and additional localities, together with a complete list of the 
bird species and their relative abundance noted at Afluente (Appendix). 
Another LSUMZ (Louisiana State Museum of Zoology) group worked at 
higher elevations on the same mountain; some of their results have been 
published (O'Neill & Graves 1977), and others are referred to in this paper. 
Terminology for descriptions of foraging behaviours follows Fitzpatrick 

phlogophilus hemileucurus Ecuadorean Piedtail. Previously thought to 
be endemic to Ecuador, this hummingbird was observed daily in small 
numbers in recent second-growth along forest edge and in open forest 
undergrowth at 1 1 00m. These birds were seen hanging on small red, tubular 
flowers. Their small size and striking tail pattern are good field marks. 
8 specimens were netted (see Table 1). In addition to these specimens, 
J. P. O'Neill netted another individual on 22 July 1978 near the crest of a 
ridge ("2600 ft") at the headwaters of the Rio Cenepa, Dpto. Amazonas. 
These records are the first for Peru, and they represent a southerly range 
extension of about 350 km. 

urochroa bougeri White-tailed Hillstar. This was a rare bird in the 
Afluente area. A single specimen (Table 1), U.b. leucura, was netted in forest 
undergrowth on a steep slope at 11 00m. The species was seen only 3 times 
during our stay, including an observation of an individual flycatching in 
open, well-shaded spaces 2-4111 above ground in tall river-edge forest. U. 
bougeri was previously known primarily from the Western Andes of Colombia 
and the Eastern Andes of Ecuador (Meyer de Schauensee 1966); these are 
the first records for Peru. 

picumnus steindachneri Speckle-chested Piculet. This species was observ- 
ed almost daily with large mixed-species flocks of ovenbirds, woodcreepers, 
flycatchers and tanagers that moved through forest canopy and tall second- 
growth. The piculets foraged primarily near the ends of slender branches and 
vines, on which their vigorous tapping produced a distinctive rattling sound. 
On several days a pair of adults with 2 juveniles was noted in a flock, the 
juveniles noisily begging for food. The only vocalisation given by adults was 
a high-pitched trill lasting several seconds. Five specimens were netted 
(Table 1). P. steindachneri is endemic to northern Peru, and is known only 
from the Departments of Amazonas and San Martin (Meyer de Schauensee 

herpsilochmus axillaris Yellow-margined Antwren. These antbirds were 
observed in groups of 2-6, always in association with mixed-species flocks. 

65 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 

They preferred dense foliage and vine tangles at mid-heights in the forest 
edge, where they gleaned leaves and twigs, occasionally hover-gleaning from 
the leaves. Nasal "aw" call notes are like those of its more widespread 
congener H. rufimarginatus . Its song is a soft Thamnophi/us do/iatus-\ike roll. 
One specimen was collected from a forest flock (Table 1). The species is 
known only from a few Andean localities from Colombia to southern Peru 
(Meyer de Schauensee 1966). 

myiophobus phoenicomitra Orange-crested Flycatcher. We found this 
flycatcher to be fairly common. They were netted in open spaces in the upper 
undergrowth and at mid-heights, 2-5 m above ground, being seen in pairs 
and (family?) groups of 3-4 birds. Six specimens were netted (Table 1), all 
agreeing with the description of the nominate race in Cory & Hellmayr (1927). 
This is the first record of M. phoenicomitra in Peru. 

myiophobus roraimae Roraiman Flycatcher. These flycatchers were ob- 
served only once, when 3 were seen together in shrubbery at the edge of very 
dense, stunted forest on sandy soil at 1070 m. Three specimens were netted in 
similar habitat nearby and also in tall forest undergrowth (Table 1). A speci- 
men of M. roraimae was also collected by J. P. O'Neill on 13 July 1970 at 
Huanhuachayo (1660 m), Dpto. Ayacucho and another individual was taken 
by T. S. Schulenberg on 19 August 1977 just east of Abra Divisoria (1400 m), 
Dpto. Huanuco (both in Table 1). These observations and specimens sub- 
stantially augment the Peruvian distribution (Sandia, Dpto. Puno) given by 
Traylor (1979). In addition, Terborgh & Weske (1975) give the elevational 
ranges for the species as 13 20- 15 20 m in the Sira Mountains, Dpto. Huanuco, 
and 1 2 10-15 20 m m tn -e Vilcabamba Mountains, Dpto. Cuzco. M. roraimae 
apparently occurs throughout Peru, and probably Ecuador, in a very narrow 
elevational zone of lower montane cloud forest. 

myiophobus cryptoxanthus Olive-chested Flycatcher. One was netted in 
low second-growth along a river at 1100 m. The species known from only a 
few scattered localities in Ecuador and northern Peru (Traylor 1979) and its 
true relationship to widespread M.fasciatus remains to be determined. The 2 
species prefer similar forest edge habitats, but whether or not they are ever 
syntopic {cryptoxanthus occurs at slightly higher elevations than fasciatus) is 
not known. Furthermore, both species share at least one type of vocalisation, 
a rather soft, rapidly delivered "weh-weh-weh-eh-eh-eh-eh." Morphologic- 
ally, the 2 species differ in only minor ways, and in fact, M. cryptoxanthus was 
considered a race of M.fasciatus by Cory & Hellmayr (1927). 

rhynchocyclus fulvipectus Fulvous-breasted Flatbill. A pair was observ- 
ed several times at mid-heights in tall, mossy, river-edge forest at 11 00 m, 
occasionally following mixed-species flocks, but usually noted apart from 
other birds. They often remained on one perch for periods of up to 1 minute, 
and sallied outwards and upwards to glean insects from foliage and twigs. On 
3 1st August 1977 a closed, pendant nest containing 2 white, cinnamon-flecked 
eggs was found about 3 m above a dry stream-bed. The structure measured 
approximately 8x3 cm and was made of slender twigs, grasses, mosses and a 
few leaves ; its entrance was near the bottom at one side. The incubating female 
was collected (Table 1). Within its extensive latitudinal range of Colombia to 
Bolivia (Meyer de Schauensee 1966), R. fulvipectus apparently has a narrow 
elevational range along the lower slopes of the Andes. 

[BulLBrit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 66 

poecilotriccus capitale Black-and-white Tody-Flycatcher. This rare 
species was recorded twice; a male was seen and a female was netted (Table 1). 
Both individuals were in tall shrubs and small trees at forest edge not far 
from a stream at 1 100 m. The male was making short upward sallies to foliage 
1-2 m above ground. The LSUMZ has two other unpublished specimens of 
P. capitale, a male netted by T.A.P. on 15 December 1974 in second-growth 
20 km SW of Chiriaco (520 m), Dpto. Amazonas, and another male collected 
on 5 August 1977 by Juan Yampits at Shaim on the upper Rio Comaina, 
Dpto. Amazonas (Table 1). This poorly known species has been found from 
southeastern Colombia to northern Peru, where formerly it was reported 
only from the Departments of Loreto and San Martin (Traylor 1979). 

mecocerculus calopterus Rufous-winged Tyrannulet. Several of these 
warbler-like flycatchers were observed with mixed-species flocks in small- 
leaved canopies of tall trees from 1220 to 1370 m. Their foraging movements 
were varied and included perch-gleans, short upward sallies and hover- 
gleans of foliage. Its small geographic range is given by Traylor (1979) as 
southern and central Ecuador to northern Peru in Dpto. San Martin. LSUMZ 
personnel (T. Parker, M. Robbins) have additional sight records from farther 
south, along the Tayabamba-Ongon trail, in extreme eastern Dpto. La 

tangara chrysotis Golden-eared Tanager. Of 10 species of Tangara found 
in the Afluente area, this one had the narrowest elevational distribution and 
was one of the least common. 1-2 were observed with most large flocks of 
tanagers and honeycreepers from 1070 to 1220 m; the species was not seen 
higher or lower. Individuals of T. chrysotis hopped along mostly bare 
branches, peering down from side to side and pausing to probe clumps of 
epiphytic mosses. They also occasionally gleaned leaves and were seen to 
feed on small melastome fruits as well. Only one specimen was obtained 
(Table 1). T. chrysotis ranges from Colombia to Bolivia, but it is scarce in 
collections and uncommon to rare in its cloud forest habitat. 

calochaetes coccineus Vermilion Tanager. An uncommon to rare bird in 
this locality (but fairly common in the Cordillera Azul of Dpto. Huanuco), 
this species was seen irregularly from 1140 to 1370 m. One to several 
individuals were noted with mixed-species flocks of tanagers on only 3 
occasions. The species may be more common at slightly higher elevations in 
this region. Calochaetes foraged in a manner similar to Tangara chrysotis. On 
31 August 1976 J. P. O'Neill obtained 2 C. coccineus from forest canopy just 
above Afluente ("15 road km below Abra Patricia, 5 500 ft"). Two additional 
specimens were obtained by O'Neill on 8 and 11 May 1971, respectively, at 
Huanhuachayo (1660 m), Dpto. Ayacucho, and 2 more were collected by 
J. W. Eley and T. S. Schulenberg on 8 and 11 August 1977, respectively, in 
tall cloud forest just east of Abra Divisoria (1370 m), in the Cordillera Azul, 
Dpto. Huanuco (see Table 1 for data on all of the above specimens). C. 
coccineus was previously known from only 2 localities in Peru (Storer 1970), 
and a few others in Colombia and Ecuador. Terborgh & Weske (1975) give 
its elevational limits as 11 30 - 1570 m in the Sira Mts., Dpto Huanuco and 
1480 - 1950 m in the Vilcabamba Mts., Dpto. Cuzo. 

chlorospingus flavigularis Yellow-throated Bush-Tanager. This was a 
common tanager from 900 to 1 1 60 m, where it formed the nucleus of mixed- 


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69 [Btdl.Brit.Orn.Cl. 19 82: 102(2)] 

species flocks in dense second-growth at the forest edge i-iom above ground. 
It was also occasionally seen in the canopy, especially in fruiting trees. The 
song is a loud, musical "wheet-chew-wheet-wheet-wheet-chew" or a shorter 
"chip-weet-weet-weet", and members of flocks utter a variety of "chip" and 
"seet" notes. We collected 7 specimens, most of which were in breeding 
condition or had recently bred (Table 1). Like Tangara chrysotis, this bush- 
tanager is an "indicator species" for the ill-defined "Upper Tropical Zone" 
of humid, mossy forest on the lower slopes of the Andes. Above 1220 m, 
C. flavigularis is replaced in the Department of San Martin by its very similar- 
looking congener C. parvirostris, which is equally common where it occurs. 
C. flavigularis is found from Panama south at least to central Peru (Storer 

chlorospingus canigularis Ash-throated Bush-Tanager. Like the last 
species, this bush-tanager was also common, but was noted mainly from 
mid-heights to the canopy of mature forest. Up to 10 individuals were often 
observed with flocks of other tanagers, searching mosses on slender branches, 
gleaning leaves and feeding on small fruits. The song differs from that of its 
similar congener C. ophthalmicus in being less musical and more rapidly 
uttered (see O'Neill & Parker 198 1); a typical song phrase of canigularis 
consists of an accelerating series of chips having a distinctly raspy quality. 
Three specimens were obtained at Afluente and there are 3 additional exam- 
ples in the LSUMZ collected by J. P. O'Neill and J. Hebrard in August 1967 
in the Cordillera Azul (1600 m), Dpto. Huanuco (Table 1). C. canigularis was 
known in Peru only from north of the Maranon River in Dpto. Cajamarca 
(Storer 1970). The above specimens extend the known distribution of this 
tanager southward along the base of the Andes about 5 00 km. 


List of bird species and their relative abundance at Afluente, Peru. 

This is one of only 3 locality lists to be published for the Andean cloud forest zone 

extending from Venezuela to Bolivia 

C= recorded daily in moderate to large numbers, generally more than 10 individuals; 
U = recorded daily or every other day in small numbers, generally far less than 10 
individuals; R = recorded once per 3 days or less; L = one record, or one individual 
noted less than 3 times. 

Crypturellus obsoletus, R; Elanoides forficatus, L; Accipiter striatus, ~L;Buteo magnirostris, U; 
Buteo albigula, L; Leucopternis albicollis, L; Morphnus guianensis, L; Micrastur ruficollis, R; 
Pipile pipile, R ; Aburria aburri, U ; Odontophorus sp., L ; Tringa solitaria, U ; Actitis macularia, U ; 
Columba plumbea, U ; Aratinga {leucophthalmus), R ; Pionus sordidus, C ; Ama^pna mercenaria, U ; 
Piaya cay ana, R; Pulsatrix melanonota, R; Streptoprocne ^onaris, U; Cypseloides rutilus, C; 
Chaetura cinereiventris, C; Doryferajobannae, R; D. ludoviciae, C; Phaethornis guy , C; Phaethornis 
sp., R; Eutoxeres aquila, U; Klais guimeti, U; Pope lair ia popelairii, R; Chlorostilbon mellisugus, 
R ; Thalurania furcata, U ; Adelomyia melanogenys, C ; Phlogophilus hemileucurus , U ; Heliodoxa 
leadbeateri, C ; Ocreatus underwoodii, U ; Aglaiocercus kingi, U ; Schistes geoffroyi, R ; Heliothryx 
aurita, L; Pharomachrus antisianus, U; Trogon persona tus, U; Chloroceryle americana, L; 
Micromonacha lanceolata, L; Aulacorhynchus derbianus, L; Ramphastos ambiguus, C; Picumnus 
steindachneri , C; Pi cuius rubiginosus, C; Veniliornis fumigatus, C; Phloeoceastes haematogaster , R; 
Dendrocincla fuliginosa, L; Sittasomus griseicapillus , C; Xiphocolaptes promeropirbynchus , L; 
Xiphorhyncbus triangularis, C; Cranioleuca curtata, U; Xenerpestes singularis, U; Premnoplex 
brunnescens, C ; Syndactyla subalaris, L ; Anabacerthia striaticollis, C ; Pbilydor rufus, U ; Automolus 
rubiginosus, R; Thripadectes melanorhynchus , U; Xenops rutilans, C; Thamnophilus palliatus, U; 
Thamnistes anabatinus, U; Dysithamnus mentalis, C; Myrmotherula schisticolor , C; Herpsilochmus 
axillaris, U ; Cercomacra nigrescens, U ; Hylophylax naevia, L ; Formicarius (rufipectus), L ; Grallaria 
(guatimalensis), L; Grallaricula flavirostris, R; Conopophaga castaneiceps, L; Scytalopus femoralis, 
U ; Laniisoma elegans, U ; Pipreola (frontalis), L ; Ampelioides tschudii, L ; Pachyramphus versicolor, 
C ; Tityra semifasciata, U ; Pyroderus scuta tus, L ; Cephalopterus ornatus, U ; Rupicola peruviana, 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.CL 19 82: 102(2) ] 70 

C; Masius chrysopterus, C; Chloropipo unicolor, U; Piprites Moris, R; Schiffornis turdinus, U; 
Sayornis nigricans, U; Colonia colonus, R; Tyrannus melancholicus , C; Legatus leucophmius, U; 
Conopias cinchoneti, U ; Myio^etetes similis, L ; Rhytipterna simplex, R ; Myiarchus cephalotes, L ; 
Myiarcbus tuberculifer, R; Contopus fumigatus, C; Myiobius villosus, U; Myiotriccus ornatus, C; 
Pyrrhomyias cinnamomea, C; Myiophobus phoenicomitra, U; Myiophobus cryptoxanthus , L; Af. 
roraimae, R ; Platyrinchus mystaceus, C ; Tolmomyiass ulphurescens , U ; Rhynchocyclus fulvipectus, 
R; Todirostrum cinereum, U; i 3 . capitale, R; Lophotriccus pileatus, C; Pseudotriccus (pel^elni), L; 
Pogonotriccus ophthalmicus, C; Serpophaga cinerea, C\ Mecocerculus calopterus, U; Tyranniscus 
viridiflavus, C; Leptopogon super ciliaris ; C; Mionectes olivaceus, C; Af. striaticollis, U; 
Notiochelidon cyanoleuca, C; Stelgidopteryx ruficollis, U; Cyanocorax yncas, U; Odontorchilus 
branickii, U; Troglodytes aedon, C; Henicorhina leucophrys, C; Cyphorhinus thoracicus, U; Catharus 
dry as, C; Platycichla leucops, C; Turdus albicollis, R; Smaragdolanius leucotis, C; Vireo gilvus, U; 
Hylophilus olivaceus, R; Psarocolius sp., L; Parula pitiayumi, C; Myioborus miniatus, C; 
Basileuterus tristriatus, C; B. rivularis, U; Coereba flaveola, C; Diglossa glauca, C; Iridophanes 
pulcherrima, L ; Dacnis cay ana, C; D. line at a, C ; Chlorophonia cyanea, C ; Euphonia xanthogaster, 
C; Z2. mesochrysa, R; Chlorochrysa calliparaea, C; Tangara chilensis, C; 7\ schrankii, C; 7\ 
punctatus, C ; 7\ arthus, C ; 7". xanthocephala, C ; 7^. chrysotis, U ; 7". par^udakii, R ; 7\ cyanotis, 
U; 7\ cyanicollis, C; T. gyro la, U; Thraupis episcopus, U; T. palmarum, C; 7\ cyanocephala, R; 
Ramphocelus nigrogularis, L ; Calochaetes coccineus, U ; Piranga leucoptera, C ; Z.<2«/o fulvus, U ; 
Creurgops verticalis, U ; Chlorospingus flavigularis , C; C. canigularis, C ; Saltator maximus, R ; 
Pitylus grossus, L; Sporophila castaneiventris, R; Atlaptetes brunneinucha, U; Myorpi^a aurifrons, 
U ; Car due lis olivacea, U. 

Acknowledgements: We thank J. V. Remsen, Jr. for reviewing this manuscript. J. P. O'Neill 
generously allowed us to incorporate several of his unpublished records. Reyes Rivera A. 
was an indispensable aid during fieldwork in San Martin. We are also indebted to John S. 
Mcllhenny for his support of LSUMZ fieldwork. Finally, we thank the Direccion General 
Forestal y de Fauna, Ministerio de Agricultura, Lima, Peru, for its continuing interest in 
and support of LSUMZ field studies. 

References : 

Cory, C. B. & Hellmayr, C. E. 1927. Catalogue of birds of the Americas. Field Mus. Nat. 

Hist., Zool. Ser. Vol. 13, part 5 : 1-5 17. 
Fitzpatrick, J. W. 1979. Foraging behavior of Neotropical tyrant Flycatchers. Condor 82: 

Meyer de Schauensee, R. 1966. Tfo Species of Birds of South America and their Distribution. 

pp. i-xvii, 1-577. Livingston: Narberth, Pennsylvania. 
O'Neill, J. P. & Graves, G. R. 1977. A new genus and species of owl (Aves: Strigidae) 

from Peru. Auk 94: 409-416. 
O'Neill, J. P. & Parker, T. A., III. 198 1. New subspecies of Pipreola riefferii and Chloro- 
spingus ophthalmicus. Bull.Brit.Orn.CL 101(2): 294-299. 
Parker, T. A., Ill & Parker, S. A. 1980. Rediscovery of Xenerpestes singularis. Auk 97: 

Storer, R. W. 1970. Thraupinae. In Check-list of Birds of the World. Vol. XIII. Cambridge, 

Terborgh, J. W. & Weske, J. S. 1975. The role of competition in the distribution of 

Andean birds. Ecology 56: 562-576. 
Traylor, M. A., Jr. 1979. Tyrannidae. In Check-list of Birds of the World. Vol. VIII. 

Cambridge, Mass. 

Address. Theodore A. Parker, III and Susan Allen Parker, Museum of Zoology, Louisiana 
State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70893, U.S.A. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1982 

The case for the retention of Anaplectes as a separate 


by J. H. Elgood 

Received 29 September 19 81 
The genus Malimbus is sufficiently distinctive to have attracted the attention 
of several ornithologists. Moreau (1958) stated 'the case for retaining 

7 1 {Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2) ] 

Malimbus as a separate genus is not strong', maintaining that it is separated 
from Ploceus 'by nothing more than the red carotenoid pigment in the 
plumage'. But it must be remembered that Moreau later (i96oa,b) took a 
fairly extreme view, reducing the weaver species into a very much smaller 
number of genera than had been formerly recognised. 

The fundamental raised issue is what constitutes a genus ? Biologists agree 
that a genus is a group of species thought to have had a close common ancestry 
and that are, usually, quite distinct and separable from other groups of species 
in the same widely accepted next higher taxon, whether tribe, sub-family or 
family. Some genera may now be monotypic, with a single surviving species, 
and for these there can be no case for merging each in a nearly related poly- 
typic genus. On the other hand, where a taxon is thought to be still evolving, 
as with the Ploceinae, some evolutionary trends may be represented by a single 
known species, thus also giving rise to a monotypic genus. In the Ploceinae 
the earlier taxonomic 'splitters' had undoubtedly gone too far in erecting an 
array of genera to group somewhat similar looking species, but the 'lumpers' 
seem now to have moved equally too far in the opposite direction, being 
apparently unwilling to admit monotypic genera for divergent forms. Thus 
in addition to the mergence of former Anaplectes with Malimbus, with which 
we are here concerned, there has also been, for example, (following Moreau) 
the mergence of former Bracbycope with Quelea (Hall & Moreau 1970) or with 
Euplectes (White 1963) and of former Notiospi^a with P/oceus (Hall & Moreau, 
White). If the genus concept is to have value in taxonomy it is far preferable 
to give full generic status to a clearly divergent form rather than blur an 
otherwise clear-cut related genus. In my view, that Anaplectes should be 
excluded from Malimbus, is a case in point. 

The question then is whether the 3 (or 4) subspecies previously grouped in 
the genus Anaplectes by earlier workers (Sharpe 1890, Sclater 1930, Bates 
1930, Bannerman 1949, Mackworth-Praed & Grant 1955, 1963, 1973), but 
merged by White (1963) (following the recommendation of Moreau 1960a 
and since followed by others such as Morony et al. 1975) into a single species 
Malimbus rubriceps vat in fact sufficiently distinctive, and by implication 
through separate ancestry, to warrant separation from Malimbus and the 
retention of the genus Anaplectes. 

It is noteworthy that originally Moreau (1958) kept Anaplectes separate 
from Malimbus and was therefore able succinctly to define Malimbus as a 
group of species (i) 'confined to or closely associated with, the lowland 
equatorial rain-forest of Western Africa, for the most part between about 
5 °N and 5 °S' ; (ii) 'almost exclusively insectivorous' and (iii) having 'plumages 
that are alike in being black and red'. The Anaplectes forms do not comply 
with either the first or last point, and typical Malimbus, in fact, consume a 
wider range of foods than is suggested by Moreau's second distinction, 
which in any case, is not exclusive to Malimbus. 

With regard to distribution, Hall & Moreau (1970) show such striking 
allopatry between Malimbus and Anaplectes that an extension of the allopatric 
superspecies concept might lead to the proposition that the 2 genera be 
thought of as a 'supergenus', their presumably mainly insectivorous common 
ancestor having given rise to 2 diverging forms, a 'pro-Malimbus' and a 'pro- 
Anaplectes', adapting to fill 2 niches, in rain-forest and savanna respectively. 
That the forest genus was more successful than the savanna is suggested by 

[Btill.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: 102(2)] 72 

the array of some 10 species of Malimbus as opposed to the single species of 

Coming to Moreau's second point, the food of Malimbus, many weavers 
have a fairly wide range of feeding choices. Although the Ploceinae are 
basically graminivorous, most feed on insects to some extent, even if only 
seasonally while alate termites are readily available, or to meet the protein 
needs of ovulation and of nestlings (Ward i965a,b). Several species of 
Malimbus, though apparently never graminivorous, certainly utilise some 
vegetable food. (It should be recalled that grasses are virtually absent from 
tropical rain-forest.) Thus M. rubricollis, ibadanensis and scutatus (and probably 
others) also include strippings from the fruit of the oil-palm Elais guineensis 
in their diet. The feeding habits of M. rubriceps {Anaplectes') have been 
inadequately reported, but it is probably mainly insectivorous. I have never 
seen it on the ground nor on grass heads, only searching the foliage and 
twigs of savanna trees, though McLachlan & Liversidge (1978) mention 
seeds as well as insects. 

As to Moreau's third distinction, to anyone familiar with malimbes in the 
field, their black and red plumage, typically with bold clear-cut patterns, 
together with slim curved black bills, make them instantly recognisable; as 
clearly defined a generic taxon as in any branch of vertebrate zoology. 
Nevertheless some Malimbus species do not fully conform. Two species, 
M. coronatus and M. cassini, have entirely black females, though the males are 
typical malimbes with a red crown and a mainly red head, neck and breast 
respectively. Again both sexes of M. racheliae have a plumage pattern closely 
similar to that obtaining in the corresponding sex of the typically coloured 
M. scutatus, but with yellow instead of scarlet under the tail and with orange- 
yellow bordering the red breast area of both sexes and the red head of the 
male. Similarly the imperfectly known and recently described M. ballmanni 
(Wolters 1974) has both sexes with a pattern somewhat resembling the 
corresponding sex of scutatus but with the coloured areas of the head yellow 
with a faint chestnut wash and with bright yellow under the tail. This new 
species was first located in forest in Ivory Coast, but unfortunately the 
publication was not noticed in Ibis abstracts so that, in his review of Malimbus, 
Field (1979) who had sighted ballmanni in a small forest area of Sierra Leone 
at Gola, overlooked Wolter's description and thought he had found a new 
species for which he proposed the name M. golensis once specimens eventually 
came to hand. Prigogine (198 1) has since stated that golensis is a synonym of 
ballmanni. Field described the under tail coverts as being 'daffodil yellow', 
but assures me (pers. com.) that despite many Ploceus weavers being similarly 
black and yellow, ballmanni (=golensis) distinctly had the general appearance 
(jizz in colloquial parlance) of a typical malimbe. Another comparatively 
recently described malimbe, M. ibadanensis (Elgood 1958), was found to differ 
from typical Malimbus species in that most individuals have an occasional red 
feather within the black areas of the plumage and this was thought to point 
to a possible hybrid origin, with M. scutatus and M. rubricollis as the possible 
parents. However, Hall & Moreau (1970) accepted it as a full species forming 
a superspecies with M. erythrogaster. 

Mention should also be made of another weaver, the so-called 'Yellow- 
legged Malimbe' M. ftavipes (Mackworth-Praed & Grant 1973), a bird first 
described by Chapin (19 16). Both sexes are essentially black but with 'feet 

73 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 

and toes yellow'. Few, if any, authorities would want to place this species in 
Malimbus any longer, most now regarding it as a Ploceus, though there would 
seem to be some case for placing it in another monotypic genus Rhinoploceus 
(Gyldenstolpe 1924). 

Thus, apart from the departures from the characteristic black and red 
plumage noted above, it may be said that all true malimbes {Malimbus sensu 
strictu) have a clear cut characteristic generic plumage pattern, with general 
shape and attitude (jizz) quite distinct from those of Vloceus species. Anaplectes 
does not conform with them in any way. The females of all its races lack both 
black and red: the males have red heads, and one race {leuconotos=melanotis) 
has black cheeks, but otherwise the plumage is mainly brown above and 
whitish below. In short, male Anaplectes, with some red in the plumage, 
does not resemble any of the savanna species of Ploceus, suggesting it has 
had an ancestry separate from both Ploceus and Malimbus. 

Two important points of general appearance remain. All true malimbes 
have black bills (bluish-black in M. nitens) but both sexes in Anaplectes have 
rosy-crimson bills in all seasons. Again Anaplectes differs from all true 
malimbes in having distinct eclipse and nuptial plumages, with consequent 
double moult of most of the contour feathers, a phenomenon known in 
many other savanna weavers {Ploceus, Ouelea, Euplectus - including former 
Coliuspasser) but in no true Malimbus. The perennial mode of dress of 
Malimbus can be correlated with its distribution in the rain-forest zone 5 
either side of the Equator, where seasonal differences in climate and day 
length are relatively slight. On the other hand Anaplectes ranging much 
farther north and south in savanna, is exposed to sharply demarked wet and 
dry seasons and has, in consequence, marked seasonal plumage change. 

Several workers have invoked nest structure and mode of construction as 
throwing light on weaver affinities (Crook i960, Collias & Collias 1964). A 
wide range of nest types is found amongst the true malimbes, ranging from 
the 'globular' nest of M. nitens to the extreme 'retort shaped' nests of M. 
scutatus and M. cassini (Crook i960), these last having a tubular entrance 
tunnel of up to 0.75 m in length, giving the nest the appearance of an inverted 
bed-sock. The main features of the nest of Anaplectes are: (i) an unusual, 
rope-like, method of attachment of the nest roof to the tip of a branch of, 
typically, a broad-leafed tree, 'pensile from the roof (Collias & Collias 1964), 
met otherwise in only a few species of Ploceus; (ii) although basically a retort 
shaped type, the mode of suspension and the partial incorporation of the 
entrance tunnel into the nest contour tend to give it an overall spindle 
shape; and (iii) it is constructed, mostly by the male, very largely of leaf 
petioles and mid-ribs (and sometimes whole leaves) of broad leafed trees, 
often from the tree supporting the nest. Collias & Collias (1964), who retain 
the name Anaplectes, make special mention of 'the frequent use of alternative 
reverse winding', which they say is absent from the nests of other Malimbus 
species, but is seen in some Ploceus species. Of some interest is the fact that 
Anaplectes is perhaps the only weaver occasionally to attach its nest to 
artificial supports such as telegraph wires (Bannerman 1 949) and certainly no 
malimbe has been found to do so. 

Data from egg-shell patterns and microscopic structure, and from egg- 
white and blood proteins is mostly undetermined or too scanty for con- 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: TO 2(2)] 74 

Anaplectes (M. rubriceps) therefore differs significantly from all other 
malimbes as follows :- 

(i) it is a latitudinally wide-ranging savanna form, whereas malimbes 
are confined to the sub-equatorial rain-forest zone; 

(ii) it has plumage quite different from the typical black and red of 
malimbes ; 

(iii) both sexes have a rosy-crimson bill (developing early in life) as 
opposed to the black bill of malimbes ; 

(iv) it has seasonal plumage changes, like many other savanna weavers, 
whereas malimbes have perennial plumage. 

In feeding it certainly resembles malimbes in being insectivorous, perhaps 
more strictly so than most malimbes. 

Nest structure and mode of construction suggest separation from both 
Malimbus and Ploceus but perhaps rather nearer to Ploceus. 

In conclusion, there are emphatically good reasons for removing rubriceps 
from Malimbus and re-establishing it in the monotypic genus Anaplectes. If 
further it is considered to be a single species with 3 or 4 races, it should be 
named Anaplectes melanotis, this being the earliest name attached to Anaplectes 
(Lafresnaye 1839), with precedence over rubriceps (Sundevall 1850) and 
leuconotos (Muller 185 1). 

Acknowledgements: I wish to thank Mr C. W. Benson, Mr G. D. Field and Dr J. F.Monk 
for their comments, advice and encouragement during the preparation of this paper. 

References : 

Bannerman, D. A. 1949. The Birds of Tropical West Africa. Vol. 7. Oliver & Boyd: London. 

Bates, G. L. 1930. Handbook of the Birds of West Africa. Hale, Sons & Danielson : London. 

Chapin, J. P. 191 6. Birds of the Belgian Congo. Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 35 : 27. 

Collias, N. E. & Collias, E. C. 1964. Evolution of nest-building in the weaver-birds 

(Ploceidae). Univ. Calif. Pubis. Zool. 73 
Crook, J. H. i960. Nest form and construction in certain West African weaver-birds. 

Ibis 102: 1-25. 
Elgood, J. H. 1958. A new species of Malimbus. Ibis 100: 621-624. 
Field, G. D. 1979. A new species of Malimbus sighted in Sierra Leone and a review of 

the genus. Malimbus 1(1) : 2-13. 
Gyldenstolpe, N. 1924. Zoological results of the Swedish Expedition to Central Africa 

1921. Birds. Kurgl Svensk. Vet. -sak. Hand. 3rd Ser. 1(3): 36. 
Hall, B. P. & Moreau, R. E. 1970. An Atlas of Speciation of African Passerine Birds. London : 

British Museum (Natural History). 
Lafresnaye, F. de 1839. Rev. Zool. p. 20. 
Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 1935, 1963, 1973. African Handbook of Birds. 

Longman : London. 
McLachlan, G. R. & Liversidge, R. 1978. Roberts' 1 Birds of South Africa. Cape Town. 
Moreau, R. E. 1958. The Malimbus spp. as an evolutionary problem. Rev. Zool.Bot. Afr. 


— 1960a. Conspectus and classification of the Ploceine weaver-birds. Ibis 102: 

— 1 960b. Ploceidae. In Peters' Check-list of Birds of the World. Vol. 1 5 . 

Morony, J. J. Jr., Bock, W. J. & Farrand, J. Jr. 1975. Reference List of the Birds of the 

World. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist: New York. 
Muller, J. W. von. 1851. Naumannia 1(4): 27-29. 

Prigogine, A. 1 98 1 . A new species of Malimbus from Sierra Leone. Malimbus 3(1) : 55. 
Sclater, W. L. 1930. Sy sterna Avium Aethiopicarum . British Ornithologists' Union: London. 
Sharpe, R. B. 1 890. Catalogue of the Birds oftheBritish Museum. 
Sundevall, C. J. 1850. Oefv.K. Sv. Vet. AK.Fohr. 7. 

75 [Bull.Brit.Ort1.Cl.19S2: 102(2)] 

Ward, P. 1965a. Feeding ecology of the Black-faced Dioch Quelea quelea in Nigeria. Ibis. 

— 1965 b. The breeding biology of the Black-faced Dioch Quelea quelea in Nigeria. 

Ibis 107: 326-349. 
White, C. M. N. 1963. A Revised Check List of African flycatchers . . . weavers and rvaxbills. 

Lusaka: Govt. Printer. 
Wolters, H. E. 1974. Aus der ornithologischer Sammlung der Museum Alexander 

Koenig ^.Bonn.Zool.Beitr. 25(4): 283-291. 

Address: J. H. Elgood, 26 Walkford Way, HighclirTe, Dorset, BH23 5LR, England. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

The status of the Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx 
ruficollis in Suriname 

by F. Haverschmidt 

Received 30 September 1981 

The Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx ruficollis is a rather common 
breeding bird on sandy ground in Suriname, nesting in isolated pairs in 
burrows in low sandwalls and often in descending tunnels in level ground. I 
do not know whether it ever digs the burrow itself, but it regularly nests in 
burrows of the Swallow-wing Chelidoptera tenebrosa, which is a characteristic 
bird of this habitat. 

Breeding activity starts in February and lasts into June:- males with 
enlarged gonads 13 Feb; female in burrow with finished nest ready for 
eggs, 26 Feb; nest with 4 heavily incubated eggs, 9 Apr; nest with 2 nestlings 
and 1 egg, 8 Apr; nestlings just having left the nest, being fed by their parents, 
22 May and 12 June; nest with 2 nestlings and 1 egg, 6 June (Haverschmidt 

During my residence in Suriname, 1 946-1 968, I observed yearly near my 
home on the left bank of the Suriname River just outside Paramaribo, where 
this swallow does not breed, loose groups of S. ruficollis hurrying northward, 
following the river downstream. They were certainly not migrating in the 
proper sense, but they behaved like Barn Swallows Hirundo rustica on 
migration, flying low and rapidly. The majority came over in the late 
afternoon between 1630 and 1800, and I observed these afternoon flights all 
around Paramaribo and even over the centre of the city. Apparently they 
were heading for a communal roost, where the total number must have been 
very great. I observed these flights between February (earliest date 18 Feb 
1962) and October (latest date 6 Oct 1957). The greatest numbers were seen 
during March and April through well into August. Sometimes a number 
settled down on telephone wires, where it was easy to collect specimens. All 
were moulting their primaries and in non-breeding conditions. These facts 
suggested to me that 2 different populations were involved, one resident and 
breeding from February into June, and a second one composed only of 
immigrants from February to October. 

In the report of a collection of Surinam birds collected 191 2-19 14, Bangs 
& Penard (191 8) described a new race, Stelgidopteryx ruficollis caccabatus, (from 
a series of 7 birds collected in the vicinity of Paramaribo in April, May and 
June 191 3 and 19 14, as being "similar to the nominate ruficollis, but the 

[Bit//. Brit.Orn.Cl. 1982: 102(2)] 


whole upperparts including wings and tail much darker, more blackish, less 
brownish; size slightly smaller and differing from uropygialis in having the 
rump not conspicuously paler than the back, but the upper parts of about 
the same colour" (quoted verbatim from original description). Later investi- 
gation has in fact shown that so-called caccabatus was larger, not smaller, than 
nominate ruficollis. 

Zimmer (1955) rejected this race as the few Surinam specimens at hand 
then easily matched a series of over 200 ruficollis and he failed to substantiate 
the validity of caccabatus, which he believed should be submerged. In Peter's 
Checklist of Birds of the World (i960), in which the American Swallows were 
recorded by E. E. Eisenmann, caccabatus is, however, listed and is said to 
inhabit the Gran Sabana region of southeastern Bolivar in Venezuela, 
Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana, its southern limits being not known. 

The type locality of caccabatus obtained on 19 June 191 3 can be more 
specifically identified. The type was collected by Egbert Graanoogst, one of 
the principal collectors for Penard, who had a farm at "De Tweede Rijweg" 
just west of Paramaribo, a grassland area where cattle were kept. It is a 
place I know well — a very unlikely spot for nesting Rough- winged Swallows 
and in the very area where the afternoon flights of this bird are such a regular 
feature. I therefore wondered whether caccabatus had been described from 
one of these migrants. 

At my request the series of Stelgidopteryx which I had collected and which 
are now in the Leiden Museum, consisting both of breeding birds and the 
immigrants, was sent to Mr. E. E. Eisenmann at the American Museum of 
Natural History at New York. Assisted by F. Farrand, he kindly compared 
them with other material from Suriname. Moreover the type specimen and 
series of caccabatus were examined in the Museum of Comparative Zoology 
(M.C.Z.) at Cambridge, Mass. by Dr. Lester Short and at my request also 
by Dr. R. Paynter. 

Since in swallows the 9th primary (the longest) of moulting birds is either 
only partly grown or very worn, the 7th primary (counting from inside) was 
also measured. 

Table i 
Length of 7th and 9th primaries of Stelgidopteryx ruficollis in Suriname 

7th Primary (mm) 9th Primary (mm) 

S. ruficollis 


6 3 3 92-99(95-6) 

6^ 6 


(in Leiden Museum 


1 ? 91 

2 ? ? 

99, 100 

and AMNH) 

200 93,95 




3 3 6 100-104(102.3) 




3 ? ? 98-107(105.6) 


(part sheath) 




S .r .caccabatus 

Holotype 6 99 


(in M.C.Z.) 

11.iv.14 6" 98 
4.V.14 O IOI 
li.v.14 <? 98 
11.iv.14 9 101 

1 1 7 (worn) 
1 12 

Average 99.8 Average 11 2.4 

Notes : o — unsexed 

Sex of the specimens was copied from the original labels. 
Weights: 9 breeding <j <j 14-18 (i5)g; 2 breeding 9 9i4-5,i5g. 

12 immigrant 9 9 14-18 (16. 3)g; 4 immigrant 9 9 15-17(15. 9)g. 

77 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.ip82: 102(2)] 

Eisenmann and Farrand both agree with me that there must be 2 popu- 
lations occurring in Suriname, a breeding one (specimens obtained between 
26 February and 12 June) and a migrant one (specimens between 11 April 
and 1 1 August) the last population presumably originating in the temperate 
zone of southern South America and spending the austral winter within the 
tropics. All the migrant specimens are moulting their primaries (with 
numbers 5-8 being freshly full grown and the remainder in sheath, partly 
grown or old), which agrees with the southern hemisphere schedule of 
migratory swallows. The primaries run longer in these migrants and their 
weights average greater than in the Suriname breeding birds, the new 
feathers making the wings and tail look darker. On the other hand, none of 
the breeding birds (found to have enlarged gonads or taken in the nest 
burrow) has moulting primaries. In Dr. Eisenmann's opinion the race 
caccabatus was plainly based on the migratory southern population and not 
the breeding birds and is presumably, therefore, a synonym of the nominate 
ruficollis. This would leave the breeding birds unnamed, but in view of the 
fact that the size differences may be clinal and are not clearly marked, and in 
the absence of obvious colour characters, taxonomic recognition does not 
seem worthwhile or necessary. 

Acknowledgements: I am greatly indebted to Dr. E. E. Eisenmann and F. Farrand for 
examining the specimens from Suriname, but above all to Dr. Eisenmann for permitting 
me to publish his findings and conclusions; to Dr. Lester L. Short for examining the type 
and type series in the M.C.Z. at Cambridge, Mass. and to Raymond A. Paynter for measuring 
these specimens. 

References : 

Bangs, O. & Penard, T. E., 191 8. Notes on a collection of Surinam Birds. Bull. Mus. 

Comp.Zool. 62. no. 92: 83. 
Haverschmidt, F. 1968 . Birds of Surinam. Edinburgh & London: Oliver & Boyd. 
Peters, J. L. i960. Check-List of Birds of the World. Vol. 3. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard 

University Press. 
Zimmer, J. T. 1955. Studies on Peruvian Birds. No. 66. The Swallows. Am. Mus. Novit. 

1723: 16. 

Address: F. Haverschmidt, Wolfskuilstraat 16, 773 1 AT Ommen, Holland. 
©British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

The taxonomic status of the Canary Islands 
Oystercatcher Haematopus (niger) meadewaldoi 

by P. A. R. Hotkey 

Received 18 August 19 81 

The taxonomic status of Meade-Waldo's Black Oystercatcher or Canarian 
Black Oystercatcher Haematopus niger meadewaldoi Bannerman (191 3) of the 
Canary Islands remains an enigma. Apart from a white patch in the wing, the 
bird is similar in plumage and soft part colouration to the African Black 
Oystercatcher H. moquini (Bannerman 191 3). Three hypotheses have been 
proposed to explain its taxonomic status : either it is a melanistic subspecies of 
H. ostralegus (Stresemann 1927); or a distinct subspecies of the African Black 
Oystercatcher H. moquini Bonaparte (1856) (Bannerman 191 3, 1963); or 
individuals recorded in the Canary Islands represent long-distance vagrants 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 1982:102(2)] 78 

of the southern African population of H. moquini (Etchecopar & Hue 1964). 
This paper aims to examine these 3 hypotheses by considering (a) the extent 
of vagrancy and the distribution of extralimital records of H. moquini \ (b) 
mensural and plumage differences between moquini and meadewaldoi; and (c) 
habitat preference and biology of the 2 populations. 


Synonomy of Haematopus moquini Bonaparte 
Haematopus niger Cuvier 18 16 Regne Anim. 1: 469 — Cape of Good Hope. Nee H. niger 
Pallas 181 1 Zoogr. Ross.-Asiat. 2: 131 = H. bachmani Audubon 1838 Birds Amer : ed. 
4, pi. 427. 

Haematopus ostralegus capensis A. Lichtenstein 1823 Ver^. Doubl. Zool. Mus. Berol. p. 73 — 
Cape of Good Hope. Nomen nudum. 

Haematopus moquini Bonaparte 1856 Comp, Rend. Acad. Sci. Paris 43: 1020 — Africa. Norn, 
nov. pro H. niger Cuvier nee Pallas. Type locality restricted to Cape of Good Hope by 
Traylor i960 Pub/. Cult. Co. Diam. Ang. 5 1 : 147. 

Haematopus capensis Sharpe in 1884 Sharpe & Layard's Birds S. Africa p. 672 — Cape of 
Good Hope. By providing a description Sharpe made Lichtenstein's name available 
but its authorship and date is Sharpe 1884. 


Meade- Waldo's Black Oystercatcher originally was referred to as H. 
capensis, now a synonym of H. moquini (Table 1) (Meade- Waldo 1889). 
Bannerman (191 3), on the basis of 4 specimens collected between 1890 and 
1 91 3, named the form H. niger meadewaldoi, H. niger also now being a synonym 
of H. moquini. Stresemann (1927) and Peters (1934), on the contrary, con- 
sidered both moquini and meadewaldoi to be subspecies of the European H. 
ostralegus. In recent literature, the Canary Island oystercatcher has been 
referred to as H. moquini meadewaldoi (Bannerman 1963, Vaurie 1965, King 

vagrancy in H. moquini 

The breeding range of H. moquini extends from Seal Island, South West 
Africa/Namibia (26 37'S, 15 i9'E) (Cooper et al. 1980) round the coast to 
MazeppaBay, Transkei(32° 29% 28 39'E) (Summers & Cooper 1977). 

The northern limit of its normal non-breeding range may be considered 
as the Hoanib estuary, South West Africa/Namibia (19 3o'S, 12 50'E), 
where 9 birds were seen in October 1978 and January 1979 (R. Loutit in lift.). 
East of Transkei there are only 4 records which unequivocally refer to H. 
moquini^ all in Natal, the most northerly being that of a single bird at Dawson's 
Rock( 2 8° 3 8'S, 3 2 18'E) on 31 July 1981 (D. Roberts/////'//.). 

Only 5 individual black oystercatchers have been seen in Africa north of 
the normal non-breeding range:- 3 in Angola:- 2 as far north as Lobito (12 
35'S, 1 3 25 'E) in May 1973 (Summers & Cooper 1977) and one at Foz do 
Cunene (17 15'S, n° 45 'E) in January 1975 (W. R. J. Dean in lift.) (all seen 
by competent observers); and one, even more northerly, old record from 
the west coast of Africa, in Gabon (Hartlaub 1857). Vincent (1949) actually 
restricted the type locality of H. moquini to Gabon, based on the fact that 
this is the first locality cited; but Hartlaub's record is based on a Verreaux 
specimen according to Traylor (i960), and the specimen has not been traced 
and may no longer exist. Bannerman (193 1) was noncommittal about this 
record, but it has been omitted by subsequent authors. It probably refers to 

79 {Bull.BHt.Orn.Cl.19S2: 102(2)] 

a mislabelled specimen from the Cape, where the Verreaux brothers had 
strong connections. 

There are 2 records from the east coast of Africa outside the normal non- 
breeding range. Haagner (1948) lists the bird from Beira (2o°S, 3 5°E), 
Mocambique, without details, a record which is considered by Clancey 
(1971) to refer to the European Oystercatcher H. ostralegus. Clancey does not 
justify his decision and in view of the northerly record on the west coast from 
Lobito, it seems possible that a vagrant might have reached Mocambique. 
A very strange record is from the Dahlak Archipelago, in the southern part 
of the Red Sea, where a black oystercatcher of some form was collected, but 
not preserved, by Ruppell(i845). 

The paucity of extralimital records, all in excess of 4000 km distance from 
the Canary islands, renders it very unlikely that Canary Island birds are 
vagrant H. moquini. Adult breeding H. moquini are essentially sedentary, 
though juveniles may disperse some distance from their birthplaces (pers. 
obs.). No age class data are available for the extralimital mainland and 
Dahlak Island birds, but all specimens taken on the Canary Islands have been 
adults (Bannerman 1913). 


Bannerman (19 13) based his separation of meadewaldoi solely on aspects of 
plumage and measurements, meadewaldoi being smaller and with a distinct 
white patch in the wing, a feature not shared by moquini. At the time, few 
specimens and hence few mensural data were available for moquini. More 
data are now available and comparative measurements of moquini and 
meadewaldoi are given in Table 2. The low probabilities (%) of each measure- 
ment of each specimen of meadewaldoi belonging to a bird from the southern 
African population of moquini demonstrate that although the 2 populations 
may be related at subspecific level, whore size is not necessarily a critical 
factor, they definitely do not belong to the same population. Oilmen/ 
tarsus ratios for 1 7 species and subspecies of oystercatcher are detailed in 
Table 3 . It is clear that moquini is an unusual oystercatcher in that both sexes 
are comparatively short billed; meadewaldoi, on the other hand, is relatively 
long billed and shows less variation between sexes than other black oyster- 
catchers - a feature common to most of the pied ostralegus group. 

Bannerman (1963), in describing meadewaldoi, noted that "The white 
patch formed by the basal portion of the inner webs of the primaries is very 
pronounced, while in the Cape bird {moquini) there is scarcely any white at 
the base of the quills though the primaries become lighter towards the base". 
Although moquini exhibits a pale patch in the wing (when seen from below) 
at certain times of the year, there is never, contrary to the opinion of Prater 
et al. (1977), a white patch in the wing. I have occasionally observed asym- 
metric partial albinism in the wing of moquini, but this never involves more 
than one or two feathers. The white patch in the wing of meadewaldoi is most 
1 evident in fresh plumage, whereas in moquini a pale patch is only evident as a 
result of feather wear and moult (Bannerman 1963, pers. obs.). 


In southern Africa, H. moquini is primarily a species of rocky shores, 
especially undisturbed offshore islands, contrasting strongly with the 
preferred sandy and muddy foraging substrates of H. ostralegus (Hockey & 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 19 82: 102(2) ] 



Comparison of the culmen (exposed), tarsus and wing (flattened chord) measurements of 
Haematopus moquini and the 4 existing specimens of meadewaldoi. "P" is the probability 
of each measurement of each meadewaldoi specimen belonging to the southern African 
population of moquini. 

Culmen (mm) 
length *standard P(%) 

Tarsus (mm) 
length *standard P(%) 

Wing (mm) 
length *standard P(%) 





meadewaldoi (a) 

63.2 ±2.81 

72.5 3.3 0.1 

56.1 ±2.1 
54.0 1.0 


2 75 .2± 5 .2 

262 2.5 1.2 


77.0 4.9 <O.OI 

49-2 3-3 


259 3.1 0.2 

meadewaldoi (a) 


79 2 -9 o-4 

57-8 ±1.9 

52 3.1 


278.5 ±5.1 

250 5.6 <O.OI 


81 3.6 0.02 

52 3.1 


257 4.3 <O.OI 

* Standard Deviation Units = the difference between moquini means and individual meade- 

ivaldoi measurements divided by the moquini standard deviation of the mean. 


Culmen/tarsus ratios expressed as percentages for 17 species and subspecies of oyster- 
catchers Haematopus. 

Ratio Primary data 

Males Females source 

Black forms 




This study 



Jehl 1978 

fuliginosus opthalmicus 



McKean 1978 

f. fuliginosus 



McKean 1978 




Baker 1975 

ostralegus bachmani 

141. 6 


Ridgway 1919 




Bannerman 191 3 

Pied forms {ostralegus) 




Baker 1975 




Prater etal. 1977 



1 44. 1 

Wetmore 1965 


141. 1 


McKean 1978 



Jehl 1978 




Ridgway 19 19 




Ridgway 1919 




Ridgway 19 19 




Ridgway 1919 


162. 1 


Baker 1975 

Cooper 1982). It is highly territorial and almost always occurs in pairs 
(Hockey in press), normally laying 2 eggs, but not often fledging more than 
one chick, which may remain with its parents for several months after 
fledging (pers. obs).). So few ornithologists have ever seen meadewaldoi that 
information concerning its biology is very scanty. No nest has ever been 
reported and the breeding biology is unknown. It has been recorded on both 
rocky and sandy shores, though rocky shores are probably favoured, since 
these are dominant in the areas where the bird has been recorded (Bannerman 
1922, 1963). It occurs in pairs, and natives reported to von Thanner in the 
early 20th century that often 3 birds were present together in the summer, 
suggesting a family group; but it appears that the Canary Islands population 
underwent a decline in the second half of the 19th century, and probably 
earlier, and was very rare by the beginning of the 20th century (Bannerman 

8 1 [Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 19 82: 102(2)] 

1963). The reason for the decline is unknown, but it is possible that intro- 
duced mammalian predators, such as cats and rats, may have been the cause. 
Feral cats and other terrestrial mammals are known to prey upon H. moquini 
(Hockey in press). Subsequent to Bannerman procuring a specimen in 191 3, 
there is only one sight record, a single bird seen in Tenerife in July 1968, 
the only previous record of its occurrence in Tenerife being by Du Cane 
Godman in 1872, a record previously doubted (Bannerman 1963, 1969). 
An expedition to the Canary Islands in 1970 failed to locate the bird and 
concluded that it was probably extinct (Lovegrove 1971). 


Evidence presented here strongly suggests that the black oystercatchers 
of the Canary Islands are not vagrants of the southern African population 
of H. moquini, and, based on plumage and proportions, that the Canary 
Island bird is not a subspecies of H. moquini. 

The question remains to be considered whether meadewaldoi represents an 
isolated melanistic population of the European Oystercatcher H. ostralegus, 
its geographically closest congener, as suggested by Stresemann (1927). 
Although albinism has been recorded in H. ostralegus and in the South 
Island Pied Oystercatcher H. 0. finschi of New Zealand, there is no record of 
melanism in Palaearctic ostralegus subspecies. The Variable Oystercatcher 
H. unicolor of New Zealand and Frazar's Oystercatcher of central America 
H. 0. fra^ari exhibit a range of plumages, but the phenomenon is restricted 
to these 2 species (Larson 1957, Baker 1973). Baker (1977) performed cluster 
analysis, based on 7 operational taxonomic units, on a number of oyster- 
catcher populations and his results indicate considerable dissimilarity be- 
tween moquini and meadewaldoi. However, his sample sizes were small and 
this can only be considered as a supporting argument in differentiating the 
two populations. 

Larson (1957) suggested that all oystercatchers originated from Tertiary 
melanistic Haematopus populations in the Boreal area. With the exception of 
the American Black Oystercatcher H. 0. bachmani (whose status as an ostralegus 
subspecies should be questioned - Heppleston 1973) and meadewaldoi, all 
other northern hemisphere oystercatchers are pied forms {ostralegus). The 
Atlantic and Pacific gene communication between Eurasian and North 
American populations was cut off by the middle Pliocene, and it is possible 
that meadewaldoi is (or was) a relict population of the original dark mutant of 
the Tertiary, perhaps related to H. (0.) bachmani. It is the only melanistic 
oystercatcher population in the Palaearctic region, probably surviving by 
virtue of freedom from competition with vigorous secondary pied mutants, 
and, if this is the case, then meadewaldoi represents the stock from which 
moquini, as well as other southern black forms, arose (see Heppleston 1973). 
The 2 populations have therefore probably been genetically isolated since 
the Pliocene. Reichenbach (1852) considered moquini discrete enough even 
to warrant generic status and created the genus Melanibyx. However, no 
subsequent authors have subscribed to this belief. 


On the evidence presented here, I propose that H. meadewaldoi be accorded 
specific status and be referred to as Haematopus meadewaldoi, Meade- Waldo's 
Black Oystercatcher. As a corollary, Haematopus moquini must be treated 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: 102(2)] 82 

Acknowledgements: I am grateful to my colleague Mr. R. K. Brooke for help with nomen- 
clatural and taxonomic matters. 

References : 

Baker, A. J. 1973. Genetics of plumage variability in the Variable Oystercatcher. Notornis 
20: 330-345. 

— 1975- Morphological variation, hybridisation and systematics of New Zealand 
oystercatchers (Charadriiformes : Haematopodidae)./. Zool. Lond. 175 : 357-390. 

— 1977- Multivariate assessment of the phenetic affinities of Australasian oystercatchers. 
Bijdr. Dier. 47 : 1 5 6-1 64. 

Bannerman, D. A. 191 3. Exhibition and description of a new subspecies of oystercatcher 
{Haematopus niger meadewaldoi) from the Canary Islands. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 31 : 33-34. 

— 1922. The Canary Islands: their History, Natural History and Scenery. London : Gurney & 

— 1931- The Birds of Tropical West Africa. Vol 2. London: Crown Agents for the 

— 1963. Birds of the Atlantic Islands. Vol 1 . A History of the Birds of the Canary Islands and 
of the Salvages. Edinburgh : Oliver & Boyd. 

— 1969. A probable sight record of a Canarian Black Oystercatcher. Ibis 1 1 1 : 257. 
Bonaparte, C. L. 1856. Additions et corrections aux Tableaux paralleliques de la deuxieme 

sous-classe des Oiseaux, Praecoces ou Autophages. Comp. Rend. Seances. Acad. Sci., 

Paris 43: 101 7-1026. 
Clancey, P. A. 1971. A Handlist of the Birds of Southern Mocamhique. Lourenco Marques: 

Institute de Investigacao Cientifica de Mocambique. 
Cooper, J., Robertson, H. G. & Shaughnessy, P. D. 1980. Waders (Charadrii) and other 

coastal birds of the Diamond Coast and the islands off South West Africa. Madoqua 1 2 : 


Etchecopar, R. D. & Hue, F. 1964. LesOiseaux du Nord de /' Afrique. Paris: N. Boubee et Cie. 

Jehl. J. R. 1978. A new hybrid oystercatcher from South America. H. leucopodus xH. ater. 

Condor 80: 344-346. 
Haagner, A. K. 1948. A list of birds observed in Beira and neighbourhood with some notes 

on habits, etc. Part II. Ostrich 19: 211-217. 
Hartlaub, G. 1857. System der Ornithologie Westafrikd's. Bremen, Germany. 
Heppleston, P. B. 1973. The distribution and taxonomy of oystercatchers. Notornis 20: 

Hockey, P. A. R. in press. Behaviour patterns of non-breeding African Black Oystercatchers 

Haematopus moquini at offshore islands. Proc. j Pan-Afr. Orn. Congr. Malawi 1980. 

— in press. Feeding techniques of the African Black Oystercatcher Haematopus moquini. 
In Cooper, J. (Ed.). Proceedings of the Symposium on Birds of the Sea and Shore. 1979. 
Cape Town : African Seabird Group. 

Hockey, P. A. R. & Cooper, J. 1982. Occurrence of the European Oystercatcher Haematopus 

ostralegus in southern Africa. Ardea. 70: 5 5-58. 
King, W. B. 1979. Red Data Book. Vol. 2: Aves. 2nd edition. Part 2. Morges: International 

Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. 
Larson, S. 1957. The suborder Charadrii in Arctic and Boreal areas during the Tertiary and 

Pleistocene. Acta Vertebratica 1 : 1-84. 
Lovegrove, R. 1971. B.O.U. supported expedition to the north-east Canary Islands. Ibis 

113 : 269-272. 
Meade- Waldo, E. G. 1889-93. Notes on some birds of the Canary Islands. Ibis Ser. 6 (1): 

1-13, 503- 20 ; (2) 429-438; (5) 185-207. 
McKean, J. L. 1978. Some remarks on the taxonomy of Australasian oystercatchers, 

Haematopus spp. Sunbird 9 : 3-6. 
Peters, J. L. 1934. Checklist of Birds of the World. Vol 2. Harvard: University Press. 
Prater, A. J., Marchant, J. H. & Vuorinen, J. 1977. Guide to the Identification and Ageing of 

Holarctic Waders. British Trust for Ornithology. 
Ridgway, R. 1919. The birds of North and Middle America. Bull. U.S. Natn. Mus. 50 (8): 

Reichenbach, H. G. L. 1852. Avium Systema Naturale. Leipzig: F. Hofmeister. 
Riippell, E. 1845. Systematische Ubersicht der Vogel Nord-Ost-Afrika s. Frankfurt A.M.: 


Stresemann, E. 1927. Die Schwarzen Austernfischer {Haematopus). Orn. Monatsb. 35 : 71-77- 
Summers, R. W. & Cooper, J. 1977. The population, ecology and conservation of the Black 

Oystercatcher Haematopus moquini. Ostrich 48 : 28-40. 

83 [BulI.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(2)] 

Traylor, M. A. i960. Notes on the birds of Angola, non-passeres. Pub/. Cult. Co. Diam. Ang: 

Lisboa. No. 51. 
Vaurie, C. 1965. The Birds of the Palearctic Fauna, Non- Passeriformes. London: H. F. & G. 

Witherby Ltd. 
Vincent, J. 1949. Systematic notes. Part IV. Ostrich 20: 145-152. 
Wetmore, A. 1965. The Birds of the Republic of Panama. Part I. Washington: Smithsonian 

Address: P. A. R. Hockey, Fit2Patrick Institute, University of Cape Town, Rondebosch 

7700, South Africa. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

Notes on the nesting of the Red-billed Curassow 
Crax blumenbachii 

by D. M. Teixeira and D. W. Snoiv 

Received 30 September ip#i 

On 15 November 1979 we had the rare opportunity to observe the Red- 
billed Curassow Crax blumenbachii at its nest in one of the last refuges of this 
rarest and least known curassow, the Sooretama Biological Reserve (Linhares, 
Espirito Santo, 19 1C/-19 17'S, 40 C/-40 15'W). C. blumenbachii is a 
remarkable endemic of southeastern Brazil, previously found in southern 
Bahia, eastern Minas Gerais, Espirito Santo and northern Rio de Janeiro. 
No more than 12 skins are known (Vaurie 1968) and, except for the studies 
of Sick (1964, 1970), almost nothing is known of its habits. 

The nest was sited 6 m up in an obliquely leaning tree, one of a group 
growing from the water at the edge of a lagoon. In shape and composition 
the nest resembled those of other species of Crax (Delacour & Amadon 
1973), being a rather simple rounded platform constructed of thin sticks 
(2 mm in diameter and of irregular length), about 50 cm in diameter and 
solidly based on an arboreal termite nest. There were dry leaves and old 
feathers between the maze of sticks, especially near the centre of the nest. 
Although the platform was rather thick, the upper parts of the eggs were 
visible from the ground from one side. The whole nest, however, was 
shaded and well concealed by the surrounding foliage. 

There were 2 eggs, white with rough shells stained by contact with the 
vegetable matter of the nest. They measured 92 x 61 mm and 91 x 64 mm 
and weighed 196 and 193 g respectively. Only the female was seen to incubate, 
the male usually keeping its distance. The female when incubating was 
extremely shy, flying silently away at our distant approach unless great care 
was taken and she once took 5 hours to return. When returning she surveyed 
the surroundings warily as she came closer, sometimes walking on the 
ground and sometimes climbing among the branches. When on the nest 
she became very inconspicuous, with the tail held horizontally and the neck 

The only other information on the breeding of this species that we were 
able to obtain at Sooretama was that some birds had well-grown young 
(around 100 days old) at the time we found the nest with eggs. Additional 
information on the breeding of C. blumenbachii has been obtained from birds 
nesting in captivity (Teixeira & Antas 1982, Teixeira & Sick 198 1). 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl. 19 82: 102(2) ] 84 

The diet includes insects, seeds and many fruits, most of the latter picked 
from the ground, but sometimes also from trees. At Sooretama, fruits of 
Eugenia (Myrtaceae), Ferdinandusa (Rubiaceae) and Hschweilera (Lecythidaceae) 
are eaten, but C. blumenbachii is also fond of some kinds of tender leaves and 
a characteristic sign of their foraging is the presence of bushes with their 
leaves half eaten. 

C. blumenbachii : is one of the 3 most endangered Brazilian species of Cracidae 
(Sick 1972, Sick & Teixeira 1979), its known range now being restricted to 
the still forested parts of southern Bahia and two localities in Espirito Santo 
(the Sooretama Reserve and the "Fazenda Klabin", municipio de Conceicao 
da Barra). Although officially protected since 1967, the species is still de- 
creasing as a result of illegal hunting and the continued deforestation of its 
already much reduced range in southern Bahia. If this situation does not 
change, it will probably be confined to two or three islands of forests in the 
near future. 

Acknowledgements: We would like to thank Dr. Helmut Sick, Mr. J. Machado, Mr. 
Padium and Mr. Nardelli for the help given. We thank also Prof. J. Nacinovic, Prof. G. 
Nunan and Dr. M. T. Padua for their collaboration. Many thanks, also, to the Brazilian 
"Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Cientifico e Technologico — CNPq", which 
partially supported the research. 

References : 

Delacour, J. & Amadon, D. 1973. Curassows and Related Birds. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., 

Chanticleer Press : New York. 
Sick, H. 1964. "Curassows" in The New Dictionary of Birds: 174-176. (Thomson, A. L. ed.) 

Nelson and Sons : London. 

— 1970- Notes on Brazilian Cracidae. Condor 72 (1) : 106-108. 

— 1972. A ameaca da avifauna brasileira. In Especies da fauna brasileira ameacadas de 
extincao. Acad. Bras. Cienc. : 99-1 53. 

Sick, H. & Teixeira, D. M. 1979. Notas sobre aves brasileiras raras ou ameacadas de ex- 
tincao. Pub/. Avuls. Mus. Nac. No. 62. 

Teixeira, D. M. & Antas, P. T. Z. 1982. Notes on endangered Brazilian Cracidae. Proc. 
I Simposio internacional sobre lafamilia Cracidae, Mexico, 1 98 1 . 

Teixeira, D. M. & Sick, H. 1981. Notes on Brazilian Cracidae: the Red-billed Curassow, 
Crax blumenbachii Spix, 1825, and the Wattled Curassow, Crax globulosa Spix, 1825. 
Bo/. Mus. Nac. (n. ser.) Zoologia, 299 : 3 1 pp. 

Vaurie, C. 1968 Taxonomy of the Cracidae. Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 138: 133-259. 

Addresses: Professor Dante M. Teixeira, Museu Nacional, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil. Dr. D. W. 
Snow, British Museum (Natural History), Tring, Herts, England. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 


Nomenclatural notes on the phalaropes 

It is widely understood that, in the Systema Naturae, Linnaeus signified those 
specific names that he intended as nouns in apposition to the generic name by 
the use of a capital initial letter. Such names do not change their ending, no 
matter what the gender may be of the name of any genus to which they may 
be transferred. In a few instances, this Linnaean convention has been over- 
looked, and the gender of a specific name incorrectly altered. I pointed this 
out (Parkes 1958, Auk 75: 479) in the case of Lanius Garrulus Linnaeus, 
which was incorrectly changed to "garrula" by many authors after the 
waxwing was transferred to the feminine genus Bombycilla. 

Oberholser (1974, The Bird Life of Texas: 981) called attention to a similar 

85 [Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982: 102(2)] 

case in the genus Phalaropus, but his completely valid correction has been 
generally overlooked, probably because of the many dubious or invalid 
nomenclatural innovations proposed in this posthumous book. Linnaeus 
(1758, Syst. Nat. 1: 148) described Tringa Fulkaria \ when this species was 
placed in the genus Phalaropus, virtually all authors changed the spelling of the 
specific name to fulicarius. In using a capital initial letter, Linnaeus showed his 
intent that Fulkaria should be considered a noun, and the ending should thus 
not be altered when this name is transferred to a masculine genus. Oberholser 
correctly gave the name of this bird as Phalaropus fulkaria. On the other hand, 
the specific name of Tringa lobata Linnaeus, having been spelled with a 
lower case initial, is an adjective, and is properly changed to lobatus when 
placed in the genus Phalaropus. 

A word on the English names of phalaropes is in order. The American 
Ornithologists' Union Committee on Classification and Nomenclature, now 
engaged in preparing the sixth edition of its check-list for 1983 publication, 
has voted to conform to traditional British usage in calling Phalaropus lobatus 
"Red-necked" rather than "Northern" Phalarope. This is a step toward 
international standardization of English names of birds, and the British name 
was considered to be appropriately descriptive. The American committee, 
however, retains Red Phalarope for P. fulkaria rather than Grey Phalarope of 
British usage. In this instance the American name was considered to be the 
appropriate one, as it describes the unique breeding season dress of this 
species, whereas #// phalaropes are grey in winter. 
20 January 1982 Kenneth C. Parkes, 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. Carnegie Museum of Natural History, 

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213, U.S.A. 

A long overlooked homonomy in the family Tinamidae 

Hellmayr & Conover (1942) used the name Nothura maculosa major (Spix) for 
the subspecies of the Spotted Tinamou found in interior Brazil. This name is 
based on Tinamus major Spix (1825 : 64, pi. 80). and was adopted in 2 recent 
reference works by Blake (1977, 1979)- Unfortunately, Tinamus major Spix, 
1825, is preoccupied by Tetrao major Gmelin, 1789, the basis for the accepted 
name Tinamus major of the Great Tinamou. This is not an instance of secon- 
dary homonomy. The generic name Tinamus was introduced by Hermann in 
1789, and had been widely adopted long before 1825, the date of Spix's 
publication. There was thus already a Tinamus major (Gmelin) when Spix 
introduced his own Tinamus major ', making Spix's name a junior homonym 
and unavailable. 

There is, however, another Spix name available for the same subspecies of 
Spotted Tinamou. Hellmayr (1906) identified the holotype of Tinamus medius 
Spix (1825 : 65, pi. 81) in the Munich Museum as an immature specimen of 
Nothura maculosa. Both holotypes, those of Tinamus major and T. medius Spix, 
came from "Tejuco" (— Diamantina, Minas Gerais, Brazil), and are thus 
referable to the same population. The Spotted Tinamou of interior Brazil 
thus becomes Nothura maculosa media (Spix). 

Emmet R. Blake of the Field Museum of Natural History was kind enough to verify the 
findings outlined above. 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: 102(2)} 86 

References : 

Blake, E. R. 1977. Manual of Neotropical Birds. Vol. 1. Univ. Chicago Press: Chicago and 

— 1979. Family Tinamidae. In Check-list of Birds of the World. Vol. 1, 2nd ed. (E. Mayr & 
G. W. Cottrell, Eds.). Mus. Comp. Zoology, Harvard Univ. : Cambridge, Massachusetts. 

Hellmayr, C. E. 1906. Revision der Spix'schen Typen brasilianischer Vogel. Abhandl. K. 
Bayer. Akad. Wiss. 22: 563-726. 

— & Conover, B. 1942. Catalogue of birds of the Americas . . . [etc.], part 1, no. 1. 
Zool. Ser. Field Mus. Nat. Hist. 13, part 1, no. 1 : 1-636. 

Spix, J. B. von. 1825. Avium Species Novae . . . [etc.], vol. 2. Hiibschmann: Munich. 

16 February 1982 Kenneth C. Parkes, 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. Carnegie Museum of Natural History, 

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15 21 3, U.S.A. 

First record of the Chilean Woodstar 
Eulidiayarrellii in Peru 

On 26 December 1977 Susan Allen-Stotz and I observed a sub-adult male and 
2 female-plumaged Chilean Woodstars Eulidiayarrellii feeding at Lantana and 
Hibiscus flowers in the garden of the Hotel de Turistas, in Tacna, extreme 
southern Peru. Present for direct comparison were several male and female 
Peruvian Sheartails Thaumastora cora and a female Oasis Hummingbird 
Khodopis vesper. The black tail of the male JELulidia was distinctive in colour and 
shape (see below); females were buff-coloured below (as opposed to the 
whiter Thaumastora), and had a cinnamon-buff band across the base of the 
tail. When not foraging, the woodstars perched inconspicuously within the 
cover of shrubs and short trees. On the following day, an adult male was 
observed intermittently for nearly 2 hours (12.00-14.00) as it visited luantana 
flowers at the Tacna Airport, about 10 km south of the city. The bird was 
frequently driven away by the larger Oasis Hummingbirds, and also by 2 
adult male Peruvian Sheartails also present. The flight of the woodstar was 
direct, slow, and bee-like; its wings produced a constant, distinctive buzzing 
sound not made by the 2 other hummingbird species in the area. The calls of 
Tiulidia, slightly raspy tsick notes, were less musical than the louder chipping 
of the sheartails. Occasionally the woodstar would hover and fan its black 
tail, clearly showing lengthened outer rectrices that curved inward toward 
the very short central ones. 

The Chilean Woodstar was previously known from only 4 areas in extreme 
northern Chile, from Arica (Tarapaca Province) south to Cobija (Antofogasta 
Province). Most records of this increasingly rare species (see King 198 1) are 
from the vicinity of Arica, only 40 km south of Tacna ; thus its occurrence in 
the latter area is not surprising. The species may be a regular wanderer to 
Tacna and possibly further north, and it should be looked for in the infreq- 
uently visited foothill valleys of southern Peru in the Departments of 
Moquegua and Tacna. 

References : 

King, W. B. 1 98 1. Endangered 'Birds of the World. The ICBP Bird Red Data Book. Smithsonian 

Institution Press : Washington, D.C. 
24 March 1982 Theodore A. Parker, III 

Museum of Zoology, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70893, U.S.A. 
© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 



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Correspondence about Club meetings and other matters not mentioned 
above should go to the Hon. Secretary, R. E. F. Peal, 2 Chestnut Lane, 
Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR. 

Published by the BRITISH ORNITHOLOGISTS' CLUB and printed by 
The Caxton and Holmesdale Press, 104 London Road Sevenoaks Kent. 

O v II 

ISSN 0007-1595 

Bulletin of the 


British Ornithologists' Club 

Ed/ted by 
Dr. J. F. MONK 

Volume 102 No. 3 

September 1982 


The Meeting arranged for 20 July had unfortunately to be postponed owing 
to an impending railway strike. Mr Gullick has very kindly agreed to come 
on Tuesday, 14 December and Members will be able to hear him on that 
date (see below for details). 

Saturday, 16 October, 1982. A visit at 10.30 a.m. to the Harrison Zoologi- 
cal Museum, Bowerwood House, St Botoloph's Road, Sevenoaks (close to 
the station) with its notable collection of mounted birds and of skins, 
founded by the late Dr James Harrison. After a buffet lunch, the Sevenoaks 
Experimental Wildfowl Reserve, created by the late Dr Jeffery Harrison, 
will be visited. Those wishing to attend should send their acceptance on the 
enclosed slip with a cheque for £3.30 per person to reach the Hon. Secretary 
at 2 Chestnut Lane, Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR (telephone Sevenoaks 
(0732) 450313) not later than first post on Wednesday, 13 October. 

Tuesday, 23 November 1982 in the Senior Common Room, South Side' 
Imperial College, Prince's Gardens, S.W.7 at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m., Dr A. W* 
Diamond, who has spent 2 years in Seychelles, 16 months on Aldabra and 
has visited the Mascarenes and Comores, will speak on Birds of the Western 
Indian Ocean islands. Those wishing to attend should send their acceptance 
with a cheque for £6.15 to the Hon. Secretary (address above) to arrive not 
later than first post on Thursday, 1 8 November. 

Tuesday, 14 December 1982, at the same venue and time, Mr T. M. 
Gullick, who has lived in Spain for a number of years, will speak on Birds in 
central Spain. Those wishing to attend should send their acceptance with a 
cheque for £6.15 per person to the Hon. Secretary (address above) to arrive 
not later than first post on Thursday, 9 December. 

Tuesday, 18 January 1983, at the same venue and time, Mr Robin 
Woods, who worked in the Falkland Islands for 6 years, will speak on Some 
Birds of the Falkland Islands. Those wishing to attend should send their 
acceptance with a cheque for £6.1 5 to the Hon. Secretary (address above) to 
arrive not later than first post on Thursday, 1 3 January. 

Tuesday, 8 March 1983 at the same venue and time, Dr James Cadbury 

will speak on The Restoration of Habitats for Birds. 

Volume 48 of the Bulletin, out of print for many years, has 
now been reproduced and copies are available: single num- 
bers £2 each, index £4 with a special price of £20 for the 
whole volume. 


D. R. Calder (Chairman) B. Gray ( Vice-Chairman) 

R. E. F. Peal (//<?«. Secretary) Mrs. D. M. Bradley (Hon. Treasurer) 

Dr. J. F. Uonk(Editor) J. G. Parker 

R. A. N. Croucher Revd. G. K. McCulloch, O.B.E. 


©British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

2 4 SEP 1982 

,r^PURC*7 {Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i982: I02())\ 

Bulletin of the 


Vol. 1 02 No. 3 Published : 20 September 1 982 

The seven hundred and fortieth Meeting of the Club was held at the Senior Common Room, 
South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday 22 June 1982 at 7 p.m. The 
attendance was 1 5 Members and 7 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER {Chairman), K. F. BETTON, Dr G. BEVEN, 

Guests present were: Mrs G. BEVEN, Mrs F. A. CLIFTON, R. I. CHANDLER, 

Dr T. J. Seller, whose talk had been postponed when the January meeting had un- 
avoidably to be cancelled, spoke most interestingly on "Are Bullfinches and fruit crops 
really incompatible ?", using research data assembled at West Mailing Research Centre to 
throw possible doubt on the degree of harm caused by Bullfinches in orchards. 

Land-birds of a guano island off the coast of Peru 

by David Cameron Duffy 

Received 14 October 1981 

Although the resident sea-birds of the guano islands of Peru have received 
considerable attention (e.g. Murphy 1925, 1936, Vogt 1942) there exists 
little information on the occurrence of landbirds. Galarza (1968) listed 5 
species seen during visits to Isla Chinha Norte (i3°37'S, y6°24'W): Turkey 
Vulture Cathartes aura, Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus, Seaside Cinclodes 
Cinclodes nigrofumosus , House Sparrow Passer domesticus, and Hooded Siskin 
Carduelis (=Spinus) magellanicus. Andean Condor Vultur gryphus, Black 
Vulture Coragyps atratus, Turkey Vulture, Peregrine Falcon, and Seaside 
Cinclodes have been reported by other authors (Murphy 1925, Hellmayr & 
Conover 1949: 229,Tovar 1968). 

I recorded 12 species of land-birds on Isla Mazorca (n°22'S, 77^5 'W), 
Departmento de Lima, Peru, between 21 Sep 1977 and 30 Mar 1978, except 
for the periods 4-6 Oct, 1-4 Nov, 13-19 Nov, 1-5 Dec, 29 Dec- 2 Jan, 
1-6 Feb and 3-7 Mar. 

Mazorca, approximately 1 x 0.5 km, with an area of 11 ha, is 15 km from 
the Peruvian coast. This distance is broken by several small islands of the 
Huara group. Mazorca has an elevation of 84 m, with steep slopes or sheer 
cliffs. Except for moss on the highest point, there is no natural vegetation on 
Mazorca, nor on the other islands of the Huara group. The islands' guards 
have planted about 20 flowering plants and vegetables, but these are probably 
not a significant source of food for birds. There is almost no rainfall (Murphy 
1925), but heavy morning dews are common. The only permanent water is 
run-off from a cistern and a large basin put out for the cats, dogs and pigeons 
kept by the guards. 

The dominant ecological feature of the island is a mixed colony of 300,000 
Peruvian Boobies Sula variegata and 300,000 Guanay Cormorants Phalacrocorax 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: I02(j)] 88 

bougainvillii. Smaller numbers of 5 other seabirds also nest. Phenomenal 
populations of avian ectoparasites, a possible food source, are also present. 

All the following sight records are of single individuals unless otherwise 

Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus. 25-27 Oct, 6-7 Nov, 7-12 Nov. 

Bare-faced Ground Dove Metriopelia ceceliae. 17-18 Oct. 

Band- winged Nightjar Caprimulgus longirostris. 27 Oct, 3 Jan. 

Greyish Miner Geositta maritima. 21 Sep, 16 Oct, 20 Oct, 12 Nov. 

Vermilion Flycatcher Pyocephalus rubinus. 27 Dec, 24 Feb (found freshly dead) . 

Eastern Kingbird Tyrannus tyrannus. 1 7 Oct, 2 5 Oct. 

Southern Martin Progne modestus. 22-25 Sep, 1 1 Oct, 2 on 25 Oct. 

Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica. 22-25 Sep, 16-17 Oct, 3 during 22-23 O ct > 
4 on 24 Oct, 2 on 26 Oct (one found dead). 

Cave Swallow Petrochelidonfulva. 1 7 Oct. 

House Sparrow Passer domesticus. Numbers fluctuated from 2 to 10 until 
December, after which only 2 were present. There was no evidence of 
breeding but I was unable to examine several possible locations. Birds were 
seen to sally after insects and to probe in holes in concrete and wood like the 
Paridae. M. Plenge (pers. comm.) has observed the latter behaviour by 
House Sparrows in Lima. 

Bobolink Dolichonyx ory^ivorus. 40 on 22 Oct, 24 Oct (found dead after 
striking lighthouse). 

Rufous-collared Sparrow Zonotrichia capensis. 1 6 Oct, 1 1 Nov. 

The species list is not surprising except that Turkey Vulture and Seaside 
Cinclodes, apparently the most frequent land-birds on other guano islands, 
were absent. Mazorca is relatively far from the coast, which may explain the 
absence of the vulture, while the paucity of sheltered inter- tidal habitat could 
explain the absence of the cinclodes. 

Four of the 12 species recorded are northern migrants and the rest are 
common or fairly common residents of the adjacent coast. Despite a mainland 
avifauna adapted to the arid terrain of coastal Peru, only the exotic House 
Sparrow seems able to tolerate the extreme aridity and lack of vegetation of 
this guano island. 

Acknowledgements : I would like to thank Peruvian authorities for allowing me to work on 
Mazorca. M. Plenge, B. Torres, and P. Yengle provided help and encouragement. This 
report is part of a larger project sponsored by a Fellowship from the Organization of 
American States, Princeton University, and a grant for dissertation-research by the National 
Science Foundation (DEB77-16077). 

References : 

Galarza, N. 1968. Informe sobre estudios ornitologicos realizados en el laboratorio de La 

Puntilla (Pisco) en Setiembre de 1965/66. Informe Esp. 31 : 1-26. Instituto del Mar del 

Peru. Callao. 
Hellmayr, C. E. & Conover, B. 1949. Catalogue of birds of the Americas. Pt 1 (4). Zool. 

Ser. Field Mus. 8 : 1-3 58. 
Murphy, R. C. 1^2^ .Bird Islands of Peru. Putnam: New York. 

— 1936. Oceanic Birds of South America. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist : New York. 
Tovar, H. 1968. Areas de reproduccion y distribucion de las aves marinas en el litoral 

peruano.Zto/. Inst. Mar. Peru 1 (10) : 526-546. 
Vogt, W. 1942. Informe sobre las aves guaneras.ifo/. Comp. AdmoraGuano 18(3): 3-132. 

Address: Dr. D. C. Duffy, Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology, The 
University of Cape Town, Rondebosch 7700, South Africa. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

89 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: I02(j)] 

The Somali Short-billed Crombec Sylvietta philippae 
in Somalia and Ethiopia 

by J. S. Ash 

Received 16 October 19 81 

The Somali Short-billed Crombec Sylvietta philippae is a little known bird, 
which previously has only twice been reported in the field as a distinct 
species ; first by Sir Geoffrey Archer, who thought it was a new Eremomela 
when he first collected it in 191 8. Though, at that time, "It was described by 
someone in the British Museum as a new species" (Archer & Godman 1961 : 
1259-61), "the description was never published''' (Archer's italics). Much later, 
Williams (1955) found it again independently and described it as a new 
Sylvietta. Other specimens have since been found in collections and have been 
reported upon (Erard 1974, Roche 1966, 1975, 1977). The species is now 
known to be fairly widespread in Somalia (pers. obs.), and it occurs in the 
adjoining area of Ethiopia (Erard 1974 and pers. obs.); but it lives in country 
seldom visited by ornithologists, so that it will be a long time before its 
range is finally determined. 

Hall & Moreau (1970) regarded the 3 short-billed Sylvietta (whytii, brachyura 
and philippae) as a superspecies, distinct from both the long-billed species, 
rufescens and isabellina, which form another superspecies. A further 4 forest 
and woodland species, ruficapilla, leucophrys, virens and denti form a second 
species-group. Irwin (1968), however, regards ruficapilla and whytiizs forming 
a superspecies. 


Adequate descriptions of S. philippae have been given by Williams (1955), 
Archer & Godman (1961) and Mackworth-Praed & Grant (i960). My own 
impression is that the difficulties of identification have been overemphasised 
(but I had the advantage of knowing what to expect), and this impression 
needs affirming, for the species presents no particular problems of recognition 
in the field. It is clearly an Eremomela or Sylvietta, and no species in these 
genera other than S. philippae shows the combination of yellow on the 
underparts, reddish-brown legs, dark face mask and white supercilium. At 
first glance the species is reminiscent of a diminutive Lesser Whitethroat 
Sylvia curruca from its face mask; S. curruca, however, is unknown within the 
range of S '. philippae \ 


All records of S. philippae that I have been able to trace are detailed in 
Table 1, and their distribution is shown in Figure 1. It occurs in northern 
and western Somalia (not in the northeast, pace Hall & Moreau 1970), and 
just extends into the Ogaden (Ethiopia). It may be expected more widely 
in the Ogaden when further exploration becomes possible (travel in this 
area has always been hazardous, and is now virtually impossible). 

S. brachyura has a much wider distribution, extending right across northern 
Somalia, south through the central Ogaden and across southern Somalia. 
However, except in the small area of the upper Juba, in Somalia, nowhere 
else so far as is known do the 2 species overlap. On the other hand, S. 
isabellina extends in a broad belt through the west of northern Somalia 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.198 z: i02(j)] 


/\ N ^ 


^ N ( 

•"■••j^^^ __ 

/ J 

.•■••'" \. / 

y^ "'•. SOMALIA 


^x\ x 



x^T? / 

1 OGADEN ; .- - "y^/' / 


X xy^~ 3 

xj>\ •. y 

/ / R Sh*b 

1 1: / 
ellel l..v/ 

'•. »R. Juba 

//V£//W 0C£VW 

\ // 




Fig. 1. Distribution of Sylvietta philippae in Somalia and Ethiopia in relation to that of 
S. brachyura and S. isabellina. The distribution of S. brachyura lies to the west of the broken 
line, of S. isabellina to the west of the dotted line, and S. philippae records are shown by 
half-degree squares marked with a X. Map based on Somalia Distribution Scheme {vide 
Ash & Pomeroy 198 1). 


All known records of Syl 

'ieffa philippae in Somalia 

and Ethiopia 

No. Locality 






i. Burao 

oyVN, 45°33'E 


— .ii.18 


Archer & Godman 


2. Eil Huma 

o9°23'N, 4j°io'E 




Archer & Godman 

1 961 

3. Daba Dalol 

o8°57'N, 46°2i'E 


— .ii.18 



Archer & Godman 


4. Garrero 

o8°54'N, 46°io'E 



Archer & Godman 


5. Nr. Galkayu 

o6°5o'N, 47°25'E 




Williams 1955 

6. Nr. Dusa Mareb 

o5°32'N, 46°23'E 

-•-• 4 ' 

,55-5 ( 2 <?d;_ 
1-53(4??) _ 

Williams 1955 

7. Nr. Belet Uen 

o4°5o'N, 4j°2o'E 


-•-•Hi 5 

Williams 1955 

8. Iesomme 

o4°o3'N, 45°39' E 





Roche 1975* 

9. Run 

o8°48'N, 48°52'E 




Roche 1975 

10. Run 

o8°48'N, 48°52'E 





Roche 1977 

II. Bogol Mayo (nkm ESE) 

o4°3o'N, 4i°35'E 





Erard 1974 



5 2 -5 


Erard 1974 

12. Gheraro 

07°5o'N, 45°54'E 



13. Gheraro (iokm SW) 

°7°47'N, 45°5i'H 






14. Mataban 

o5°io'N, 4j°27'E 





Ash & Miskell 

15. ElDcre(i 5 km W) 

oj°2o'N, 46°o3'E 





Ash & Miskell 

16. Dusa Marcb (6km SW) 

05°28'N, 46°2i'E 





Ash & Miskell 

17. Lake Sinadogo (5 km 


o5°24'N, 46°22'E 





Ash & Miskell 

18. Maregur^km NE) 

o5°47'N, 46°33'E 





Ash & Miskell 





Ash & Miskell 

19. Galkayu (iokm Nlv) 

o6°5t'N, 47°2j'E 



Ash & Miskell 

20. Bur Dinle (17km NI 


o7°44'N, 47°56'E 




Ash & Miskell 

21. Bulo Burti (9km N) 

03°57' N . 45°3 6 ' E 





Ash Sc Miskell 

22. Garba Harray (38km 


o3°oi'N, 42°i7'E 





Ash & Miskell 

23. Lugh (43km SW) 

o3°3i'N, 42°i9'E 





Ash & Miskell 

24. Wajit (19km W) 

°3 & 5o'N, 43°04'E 



— . 


Ash & Miskell 

25. Wajit (26km S) 

03°3o'N, 43°i4'E 

7.x. 79 



Ash & Miskell 

26. Garoc(ioikm S) 

o8°24'N, 48°29'E 

ids . 



, — 

Ash & Miskell 

27. El Dcre(3km NE) 

05 22'N, 46°i2'E 




Ash & Miskell 

Notes: *recorded as Eremomtla icterupygialis in Roche (1966); Pr. = pair; B = breeding; s = singing; numbers 
and 19-27 arc sight records; numbers 11-13 are ' n Ethiopia, the others in Somalia; o = unsexed. 

9i {Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.19S2: io2(j)] 

southwards through the Ogaden and southern Somalia west of 48 °E, and is 
widely sympatric with both brachyura and philippae, and in the upper Juba all 
3 species occur together. Further information may reveal less allopatry 
between philippae and brachyura; Hall & Moreau (1970), for example, with 
much fewer data for the 3 species, show philippae distribution to be isolated 
from both the other species. 


The nest and eggs of S. philippae are still unknown. It is not apparent 
whether the comment in Archer & Godman (1961) that "eggs would be 
laid in May" is based on gonadal development, or is a surmise based on 
experience with other species ; but it nevertheless proves accurate. The pair 
(No. 18 in Table. 1) examined on 30 April showed fully developed gonads in 
the male (7mm) and partial development in the female (largest ovum imm), 
indicating that eggs would be laid before mid-May. A pair (No. 21) on 25 May 
were feeding a newly fledged young bird, so that egg-laying must have been 
about 1 May. Williams (1955) also estimated from the gonadal development 
of his 6 specimens that the breeding season started in early May. 

Song and calls 

Song heard at the end of April and in early May is an oft-repeated sequence 
of 3 phrases, which I rendered as "ti-churr-cheesis", of which the middle 
one was ascending, but the last more subdued. Apparently agitated birds 
under observation had 2 calls (alarm?), one a "churr" as in the song, and 
another a loud metallic "tchink", clearly audible at 30m. 

Other observations 

More information is required on S. philippae's ecological requirements. 
I can confirm the observations of Williams (1955) and Erard (1974) that it is 
particularly associated with rocky ground or red sandy soils, but I cannot be 
certain that this is always the case. Although 1-3 birds may often be seen 
together on their own, philippae is also a member of the mixed bird parties 
so characteristic of "thorn-bush" country. My observations with J. E. 
Miskell, extending over a few days only, suggest that the species is fairly 
common and widespread, and there are no grounds for including it in the 
"on the fringe of inclusion" category in the African Bird Red Data Book as 
is proposed (N. Collar in litt, 8.ix.8 1). 

Males are larger than females. The wing-lengths of 5 males are 5 2-5 5 .5mm 
(mean: 54.1) compared with 5 0-5 4. 5 mm (mean: 52.1) for 7 females. The 
only weights are: 26*6*, 7.4 and iog; 2?$, 7.9 and 9g. 

Acknowledgements: I am grateful to Kathy Pruitt who kindly sent copies of papers to me 
in the field; to J. E. Miskell who contributed towards the observations in 1979 and 1980; 
to Nancy Gunkelman for drawing the distribution map, and to Dr. J. F. Monk for editorial 

References : 

Archer, G. & Godman, E. M. 1961. The Birds of British Somaliland and the Gulf of Aden. 

Vol. 4. Oliver & Boyd: Edinburgh & London. 
Ash, J. S. & Pomeroy, D. E. 1981. Mapping schemes in the Afrotropical Region. Scopus 5 : 

3 6 -3 8 - 
Erard, C. 1974. Notes faunistiques et systematiques sur quelques oiseaux d'Ethiopie. 

Bonn. Zool.Beitr. 25 : 76-86. 
Hall, B. P. & Moreau, R. E. 1970. An Atlas of Speciation in African Passerine Birds. Trustees 

of the Brit. Mus. (Nat. Hist.) : London. 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: I02(j)] 92 

Irwin, M. P. S. 1968. The relationship of the Crombecs Sylvietta ruficapilla Bocage and 

Sylvietta whytii Shelley. Bonn. Zool. Beitr. 1 9 : 249-2 5 6. 
Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. i960. Birds of Eastern and North-eastern Africa. 

Longmans: London. 
Roche, J. 1966. Recherches ecologiques et systematiques sur les oiseaux de la Republique 

de Somalie (partie ex-italienne). Monit. Zool. Ital. 74, suppl : 44-79. 

— 1975- Recherches ornithologiques en Republique de Somalie. Resultats de la 
mission de 1964. Monit. Zool. Ital. N.S. Suppl. 6 : 103-140. 

— 1977' Recherches ornithologiques en Republique de Somalie. Resultats des 
missions italiennes de 1968 et 1969. Monit. Zool. Ital. N.S. Suppl. 9 : 201-23 1 . 

Williams, J. G. 1955. A new species of Sylvietta from Italian Somaliland. Ibis 97: 582-583. 

Address: Dr. J. S. Ash, Division of Birds, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian 
Institution, Washington, D.C. 20560, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

Plumage "atavism" in a Black-crowned Night Heron 
Nycticorax nycticorax 

by M. Gochfeld, P. A. Buckley \ Fr amine G. Buckley 

Received ij October 1981 

Herons with abnormally white plumage have seldom been reported, probably 
because white species, age-classes or colour morphs normally occur in many 
genera of the Ardeidae (see particularly for detailed discussion Berlioz 1 949 
and Hancock & Elliott 1978). On 12 June 1978, during a helicopter survey- 
census of colonially breeding waterbirds on Long Island, New York 
(Buckley & Buckley 1980), we flushed a whitish heron with a group of 
Black-crowned Night Herons Nycticorax nycticorax in a heronry on Gardiner's 
Island, Suffolk County, New York. Following up our initial impression of a 
ghostly cream-white night heron, we were surprised to see a bird whose 
white primaries stood out in contrast to the pale beige mantle and upper 
wing coverts with fine olive shaft streaking, a character combination 
immediately calling to mind the Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides, a Eurafrican 
species which has not been reported in the Western Hemisphere. The bird, 
however, seemed to have the blackish crown of a night heron. We landed 
and explored the colony on foot and P.A.B. was able to obtain a sufficiently 
good view to ascertain that the bird had a black crown, yellow-green legs, 
red eyes, and a stout blackish bill, all characteristics of an adult Black- 
crowned Night Heron. Only the very pale back colour was abnormal for 
this species. 

The presence of normally coloured soft parts and crown suggests that 
leucism, one possible explanation, might not be the proper one. It is more 
likely that this individual was exhibiting a melanic schizochroism (loss of 
one of the 2-3 melanins normally occurring in its plumage). Although such 
schizochroic birds are often mistakenly referred to as leucistic, "partial 
albinos" (a contradiction in terms since albinism is an all-or-none phenom- 
enon), or dilute individuals, these terms all represent separate genetic 
manifestations (see Buckley (1982) for distinctions among them). 

The body-wide loss of melanin pigmentation in all but the crown, with 
normal carotinoid pigmentation, is more consistent with melanic schizo- 
chroism than with leucism. Which specific melanin might be involved is 

93 {Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(3)} 

unknown, as we find nothing published on night heron melanins nor their 
mode of inheritance. Difficult to reconcile with any of these explanations 
was the presence of the pale brownish back feathers. This might have been 
interpreted as an immature condition, but the back feathers of the Black- 
crowned Night Heron are among the first to change from the immature 
pattern (brown with white spots) to the adult (black) colouration. However, 
in this individual the back feathers were neither brown nor spotted, but were 
a pale beige colour with darker olive shafts, and we do not consider this to 
represent a case of neoteny — the retention of some juvenile characteristics 
by otherwise mature individuals. 

The most significant aspect of this aberrant colouration is that the atypical 
plumage pattern closely resembled the normal plumage pattern of some 
members of the not-too-distantly related genus Ardeola. We consider this 
case analagous to previous reports of hybrids which resembled neither 
parental species in plumage, but instead rather a closely related third species 
or an inferred "ancestral" form. This phenomenon, termed plumage 
atavism, has been most extensively reported in waterfowl (e.g. Harrison & 
Harrison 1963, 1969, 1971, Gillham et a/. 1966), and is summarized in 
Buckley (1982). The appearance of atavistic patterns has been generally 
interpreted as indicating the close genetic affinity of the taxa involved, and 
although no genetic data have ever been produced, these patterns are alleged 
to result from the reconstruction or recombination of ancestral genotypes 
and phenotypes in living animals. 

Apart from the evolutionary implications, reports of abnormal pale or 
white plumage in herons are few. Sage (1962) reported an abnormal Grey 
Heron Ardea cinerea and Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris, and Ross (1963) 
reported an American Bittern B. lentiginosus with a single white feather. On 
12 May 1969 at Turrialba, Costa Rica, M.G. saw a Green Heron Butorides 
virescens with asymmetric white patches on the face, neck, and throat, and 
2 white inner secondaries on the left wing. The prevalence of all-white 
species, of morphs and of juvenal plumages in the family hampers the 
detection of abnormally white plumages. The present report of an aberrant 
plumage resulting in a partially atavistic pattern, appears to be the first 
reported in the Ardeidae and one of the few outside the waterfowl. 

Acknowledgements: P.A.B. and F.G.B.'s colonial waterbird survey-censuses have been 
supported by the Office of Scientific Studies, North Atlantic Region, U.S. National Park 

References : 

Berlioz, J. 1949. L'albinisme du plumage chez les Ardeides. UOiseau 19: 11-30. 

Buckley, P. A. 1982. Avian Genetics — in Petrak, M. (ed). Diseases of Cage and Aviary Birds, 

2nd ed. Lea & Febiger: Philadelphia, in press. 
Buckley, P. A. & Buckley, F. G. 1980. Population and colony-site trends of Long Island 

waterbirds for five years in the mid 1970's. Trans. Linn. Soc. N.Y.9: 23-56. 
Gillham, E., Harrison, J. M. & Harriscn, J. G. 1966. A study of certain Aythya hybrids. 

iyth Ann. Rep. Wildfowl Trust: 49-65 . 
Hancock, J. & Elliott, H. F. I. 1978. The Herons of the World. Harper & Row: New York. 
Harrison, J. M. & Harrison, J. G. 1963. A Gadwall with a white neck ring and a review of 

plumage variants in wildfowl. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 83: 101-108. 

— — 1969. A goose hybrid with the head pattern of the Giant Canada Goose. 
Bull. Brit. Orn. CI 89 : 3 1-3 2. 

— — 1 97 1. A back-cross hybrid involving Cinnamon Teal and Northern Shoveler, 
and remarks on hybrid characters in the group of "Blue-winged Duck". 
Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 91 : 99-103. 

[Bull.Brit.Ortl.Cl.i9S2: I02(j)] 94 

Ross, C. 1963. Albinism among North American birds. Cassinia 47 : 2-21. 
Sage, B. L. 1962. Albinism and melanism in birds. Brit. Birds 5 5 : 201-225 . 

Addresses: Dr. Michael Gochfeld, Environmental & Community Medicine, U. M.D.N. J. 
Rutgers Medical School, Piscataway, NJ 08854, U.S.A. 

Paul A. Buckley & Francine G. Buckley, North Atlantic Regional Office, U.S. 
National Park Service, 1 5 State Street, Boston, MASS 02109, U.S.A. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

The Lesser Whistling Duck Dendrocygna javanka 
(Horsfield) in Flores 

by S. Somadikarta and M. Noerdjito 

Received 30 November 19 Si 

Rensch (1931a: 504) reported 2$? specimens of Dendrocygna javanica (Hors- 
field) from Sumbawa Island. These specimens were collected by J. Elbert in 
Dompu (8° 32' S, 118 28' E) on 21 December 1909. This record seems to 
have been overlooked by Peters (1931 : 153), Scott (1965: 34), Delacour 
(1975 : 31, 44), and Howard & Moore (1980: 69), since none mentions that 
D. javanica occurs on the islands east of Wallace's line. In addition, Paynter 
(1963) recorded a wing of this species collected on Flores in 1956; and 
Schmutz (1977) recorded a S on Flores with enlarged gonads in November. 

In the collection of the Museum Zoologicum Bogoriense there are 2 3d of 
D. javanica from Flores Island (registered numbers 14499 anc ^ I 45°°) which 
were collected in Reo (8° 19' S, 120 30' E) in 191 1 :- wings 185.0, 191. o; 
tails 45.0, 47.0; exposed culmens 40.0, 40.0; tarsi 50.0, 49.0 mm, respectively. 
Thirteen other specimens, of 9 different species, bearing similar data and 
field labels to those of the above two D. javanica males, were reported by 
Rensch (1931b: 400). The collector's name, Endih, appeared on some of the 
field labels. Rensch, however, did not mention these D. javanica specimens in 
his subsequent publications. 

The occurence of D. javanica on the islands of Sumbawa and Flores could 
be considered as stragglers, despite Schmutz record, and it is quite likely that 
unusually heavy rainfall creating suitable habitat could have affected their 
movement (cf. Delacour 1975: 44). The average yearly rainfall in Dompu 
during a period of 15 years (1925-1941) was 1354.0 mm, while the highest 
average monthly rainfall (278.0 mm) during the same period was for December 
(Berlage Jr. 1949: 156). The actual rainfall in December 1909 in Dompu 
could not be obtained. Reo's total rainfall in 191 1 was 1098.0 mm. It is 
interesting to note that the monthly rainfall for January, February, November 
and December 191 1 was 81.0, 344.0, 62.0 and 395.0 mm respectively (cf. 
Koninklijk . . . 191 5 : 80, 81). It is most likely, then, that the z$<$ specimens 
of D. javanica from Flores Island were collected either in February or in 
December 191 1. 

Acknowledgements: We thank Dr. S. Kadarsan for critically reading and commenting on 
an earlier draft. 


Berlage, Jr., H. P. 1949. Regenval in Indonesie [Rainfall in Indonesia]. Meteor. Geophys. 

DienstBatavia. Verhand. 37: 1-2 12, maps. 
Delacour, J. 1975. The Waterfowl of the World. Vol. 1. London: Country Life. 

95 [BulLBrit.Orn.Cl.1982: i02())\ 

Howard, R. & Moore, A. 1980. A Complete Checklist of the Birds of the World. Oxford: 

Oxford Univ. Press. 
Koninklijk Magnetisch en Meteorologisch Observatorium te Batavia, Het. 191 5. 

Regemvaarnemingen in Nederlandsch-Indi'e. 33c Jaargang. 191 1. Deel 2. Uitkomsten. 

Batavia: Landsdrukkerij. 
Paynter, R. A. Jr. 1963. Birds from Flores, Lesser Sunda Islands. Breviora 182: 1-5. 
Peters, J. L. 1931. Check-list oj "Birds of the World. Vol. 1. Cambridge: Harvard Univ. Press. 
Rensch, B. 1931a. Die Vogelwelt von Lombok, Sumbawa und Flores. Mitt. Zool. Mus. 

Berlin 17 : 45 1-637. 
— 1931b. Ueber einige Vogelsammlungen des Buitenzorger Museums von den 

Kleinen Sunda-Inseln. Treuhia 13 : 371-400. 
Schmutz, E. 1977. Die Vogel der Mangarrai '{Flores). Ruteng: Flores. 
Scott, P. 1965. A Coloured Key to the Waterfowl of the World. London: W. R. Royle & Son 


Address: S. Somadikarta and M. Noerdjito, Museum Zoologicum Bogoriense, Bogor, 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

New subspecies of forest birds from Tanzania 

by F. P. Jensen <& S. N. Stuart 

Received 30 November 1981 

During 1981 a number of visits were paid by ornithologists to Mwanihana 
Forest (36 50'E, 7 45 'S), a previously unstudied mountain forest on the 
eastern scarp of the Uzungwa Mountains, eastern Tanzania. Range extensions 
and some other notable records, together with a description of the area, have 
been documented elsewhere (Stuart et at. 198 1, Stuart & Jensen 1982). In 
the present paper we revise the subspecies o£ Buccanodon olivaceum in Tanzania 
and describe 4 new subspecies of birds from the Mwanihana Forest. 

green barbet Buccanodon olivaceum 

Britton (1980) recognises 4 subspecies of the Green Barbet Buccanodon 
olivaceum in Tanzania. The nominate form ranges from the Tana River, 
south along the Kenya coast to the Usambara and Nguru Mountains in 
Tanzania. Specimens from Mahenge, eastern Tanzania, have also been 
assigned to this subspecies. Ripley & Heinrich (1969) described uluguruensis 
from the Uluguru Mountains. The subspecies rungweensis occurs in the 
highlands at the north end of Lake Malawi from Umalila and Isoko in 
Tanzania to the Misuku Hills in Malawi; while woodwardi is known from 
Nchingidi in southeast Tanzania and the Ngoye Forest in Natal, South 
Africa. A fifth subspecies, belcheri, occurs in southern Malawi on Thyolo 
(Cholo) Mt. and in northern Mozambique on Namuli Mt. (White 1965). 
Clancey (1979a) placed this species in a new genus Cryptolybia, and separated 
woodwardi as a species of Cryptolybia, Woodward's Barbet. Subsequently he 
shows convincingly that birds from Nchingidi are different from the nomi- 
nate subspecies C. w. woodwardi of Ngoye Forest (Clancey 1979b) and he 
assigns birds from southeastern Tanzania to a new subspecies C. w. hylophona. 
We follow Clancey in all these changes except that for the time being we prefer 
to retain both olivaceum and woodwardi in the genus Buccanodon. 

We compared a series of nominate B. 0. olivaceum from the Usambaras, 
Ngurus and Kilifi on the Kenya coast with 5 males and 6 females from the 
Ulugurus. We believe there to be no justification for recognising a separate 

[Bull.BriLOm.Cl.i982: I02(j)} 9 6 

subspecies uluguruensis, and prefer to assign Uluguru birds to the nominate 
form. None of the differences between uluguruensis and nominate birds 
described by Ripley & Heinrich (1969) were found to be valid or consistent 
in our comparison. Three specimens from Mahenge in the British Museum 
(Natural History) (BMNH) were, however, found to be strikingly different 
from the nominate form, but indistinguishable from a specimen collected in 
Mwanihana Forest. These 2 localities, 100km apart, are geographically inter- 
mediate between the ranges of the nominate subspecies and rungweensis. 
Mahenge and Mwanihana birds differ from all other subspecies of B. oliva- 
ceum, and we propose that they be assigned to a new subspecies: 

Buccanodon olivaceum howelli subsp. nov. 

Type: Adult female collected on 17 September 1981 by S. N. Stuart, K. M. 
Howell and T. A. van der Willigen in Mwanihana Forest, Uzungwa Mts., 
Tanzania. Elevation 1350m. No. 198 1.9. 4. BMNH. Prepared by C. A. 

Diagnosis: Differs from the nominate form and rungweensis in having a far 
darker head and throat, with the cap virtually black, as opposed to grey. 
There is also a slight, but rather variable, golden tinge on the sides of the 
breast. Apart from the darker cap it also differs from rungweensis in lacking 
the grey breast. It is markedly different from both bekheri, which has a black 
throat and chest, and B. woodwardi which has distinct yellow ear coverts. We 
detected no differencies between males and females. 

Measurements of type (mm): Wing (chord) 86, tail 52, tarsus 18.8, culmen 
from base 19.0. 

Range: The type locality, Mwanihana Forest on the eastern scarp of the 
Uzungwa Mts., Kilombero District, Morogoro Region and the Mahenge 
Mts., Mahenge District, Morogoro Region, eastern Tanzania. 

Specimens examined: 
B. 0. olivaceum (23). Kilifi, coastal Kenya, 1? (BMNH); Amani, East Usam- 
baras, Tanzania, 4^, 3$? (BMNH); Nguru Mts, Tanzania, 3^ (BMNH) 
and 1? Zoologisk Museum, Copenhagen (ZMC); Uluguru Mts, Tanzania, 
5c?c?, 5?? (ZMC) and 1? (BMNH). 

B. 0. rungweensis (5). Isoko, Rungwe, Tanzania \$, 2?$ (BMNH); Matipa, 
Misuku, Malawi ic?, i?(BMNH). 

B. 0. belcheri {11). Thyolo Mt, Malawi itf, 2$? (BMNH); Namuli Mt, Mozam- 
bique 2^, 6?? (BMNH). 
B. 0. howelli (4). Mwanihana Forest, Tanzania (type) 1$ (BMNH); Muhulu 
Forest, Mahenge, Tanzania zSS, 1$ collected by R. E. Moreau on 30.1. 1946 
and 15.2.1946 (BMNH). 
B. w. woodwardi (1). Echowe, Zululand, South Africa 1 unsexed (BMNH). 

Remarks: This new subspecies is common in the type locality over a wide 
altitudinal span from 600m to at least 1500m. We have named this new form 
after Dr K. M. Howell, one of the collectors of the type specimen. 


Phyllastrephus flavostriatus uzungwensis subsp. nov. 

Type: Adult female, ovary active, collected on 18 September 1981 by S. N. 

Stuart, K. M. Howell and T. A. van der Willigen in Mwanihana Forest, 

Uzungwa Mts, Tanzania. Elevation 1400m. No. 1981. 9. 2. BMNH. Specimen 

prepared by C. A. Msuya. 

97 {Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(3)} 

Diagnosis: This form is identical to tenuirostris except that the yellow 
streaking merges on the belly to form a bright yellow patch. It differs from 
all other subspecies in the same way as does tenuirostris '(as defined, for example, 
by White 1962). 

Measurements of type (mm): Wing (chord) 88, tail 89, tarsus 18.9, culmen 
from base 20.0. 

Range: Only known from the type locality, Mwanihana Forest, on the 
eastern scarp of the Uzungwa Mts, Kilombero District, Morogoro Region, 
eastern Tanzania. 

Specimens examined: 
P.f.flavostriatus{zz). 96*6*, 13 $9 (BMNH). 
P.f.alfredi{^). 160U 17?? (BMNH). 
P.f. olivaceogriseus($). 36*6% 29$ (BMNH). 
P.f. vincenti{\ 8). 7<?6\ 1 1 ?$ (BMNH). 
P.f. kungwensis{G). 46*6% 2$? (BMNH). 

P.f. tenuirostris (63). Amani, Tanzania 176*6% 34??; Dar es Salaam, Tanzania 
io\ 1$; Nguru Mts, Tanzania \$\ Pugu Hills, Tanzania 26*6*; Uluguru Mts, 
Tanzania 16*, 1$; Pare Mts, Tanzania i<j, 2$?; Netia, Mozambique 2$? 
P.f. u^ungwensis (1) Mwanihana Forest, Tanzania 1$ (type) (BMNH). 

Remarks: The bright yellow belly in this new form is highly distinctive 
in the field. It is common in the type locality up to at least 1500m, and it 
probably occupies other suitable areas between the ranges of tenuirostris and 


Modulatrix orostruthus sanjei subsp. nov. 
Type: Adult male collected on 4 August 1981 by F. P. Jensen (original 
number 192) in Mwanihana Forest, Uzungwa Mts, Tanzania. Elevation 
1250m. No. 1 98 1. 9. 1. BMNH. Specimen prepared by F. P. Jensen. 

Diagnosis: Differs from the nominate form in being much more strongly 
dappled on the underparts, and more olive and less reddish-brown on the 
wings and tail, sharing with the nominate form the distinct olive flanks. 
From amani it differs in being more strongly dappled, with the olive on the 
flanks being more extensive and darker, resulting in a much smaller yellow 
area on the belly. The culmen is longer and broader at the base than in either 
of the other 2 subspecies (Table 1). 

Table i 
Culmen measurements of Modulatrix orostruthus 

Culmen from base Width of culmen at base 

(mm) (mm) 

M. 0. orostruthus (type) S 21.7 6.9 

M. 0. amani (type) <J 21.0 5.9 

M. 0. amani $ 2 1 .4 6.5 

M. 0. amani <? 20.4 6.8 

M. 0. amani <J 20.0 7.0 

M. . sanjei (type) <? 23.3 7.8 

Measurements of type (mm): Wing (chord) 89, tail 76, tarsus 28.6, culmen 
from base 23.3, weight 32g. 

Range: Only known from the type locality at 1250 m in Mwanihana Forest, 
on the eastern scarp of the Uzungwa Mts, Kilombero District, Morogoro 
Region, eastern Tanzania. The species itself is known from only 2 other 

[Bull.Brit.Oni.Cl.i982: 102(f)] 9 8 

localities, the nominate form from Namuli Mt, northern Mozambique, 
8 5 okm to the south, and amani from Amani, East Usambara Mts, Tanzania, 
400km to the northeast. 

Specimens examined: 
M. 0. orostruthus (1). Namuli Mt, Mozambique i<? (type) (BMNH). 
M. 0. amani (4). Amani, Tanzania z<$$ (including type) (BMNH); Amani, 
Tanzania z<$S (Peabody Museum). 
M. 0. sanjei(i). Mwanihana Forest, Tanzania i<? (type) (BMNH). 

Remarks: We follow Benson & Irwin (1975) in placing this species in the 
genus Modulatrix. We name this new form after the village of Sanje, at the 
edge of the Mwanihana Forest, whose inhabitants have been of great assist- 
ance to us in our studies. 

swynnerton's forest robin 

Swynnertonia swynnertoni rodgersi subsp. nov. 

Type: Adult male collected on 17 September 198 1 by S. N. Stuart, T. A. 
van der Willigen and K. M. Howell in Mwanihana Forest, Uzungwa Mts, 
Tanzania. Elevation 1000m. No. 1981.9.3. BMNH. Specimen prepared by 
C. A. Msuya. 

Diagnosis: The male differs from that of the nominate subspecies in being 
more yellow and less orange on the breast. It is greyer and less olive on the 
back, but more olive and less grey on the crown and nape, giving a more 
uniform appearance. The under-tail coverts are almost white, as opposed to 
a rather variable buff colour in the nominate form. 

We have not examined S. s. umbratica, from Mt. Gorongoza, Mozambique, 
described by Clancey (1974) as having a darker head than the nominate 
subspecies, with a darker and more rufous breast and sides. This clearly does 
not apply to the Mwanihana form. The female of rodgersi remains to be 

Measurements of type (mm): Wing (chord) 71, tail 48, tarsus 23.3, culmen 
from base 16.8. 

Range: Only known from the type locality at 1000m in Mwanihana Forest 
on the eastern scarp of the Uzungwa Mts, Kilombero District, Morogoro 
Region, Tanzania. This appears to be an extremely isolated subspecies, 
separated from the 2 southern forms by 1 300km. 

Specimens examined: 
S, s. sivynnertoni (15). Chrinda Forest, Zimbabwe 146*6* (BMNH); Chirinda 
Forest, Zimbabwe 1$ (Cambridge University Museum of Zoology). 
S. s. rodgersi (2). Mwanihana Forest, Tanzania i<j (type) (BMNH); Mwani- 
hani Forest, Tanzania 1$ collected by F. P. Jensen on 3 August 1981 (ZMC). 

Remarks: We are pleased to name this new form after Dr. W. A. Rodgers, 
who first drew our attention to the biological importance of Mwanihana 
Forest. Swynnertonia s. rodgersi is known from the skins of only 2 individuals, 
mist-netted within a few metres of each other. There have been no observa- 
tions in the field. We follow Irwin & Clancey (1974) in assigning this species 
to the monotypic genus Swynnertonia, rather than Pogonocichia. 

Acknowledgements: We are grateful to Mr. C. W. Benson and Miss T. A. van der Willigen 
for their most helpful comments on an earlier draft of this paper. Dr. K. M. Howell, 
Miss T. A. van der Willigen, Mr. C. A. Msuya, Mr. N. Scharffand Mr. M. Stoltze were of 
invaluable assistance in the field, while Gibson Kihoma was a most dependable guide. Our 
visits to Mwanihana Forest would not have been possible without the help of Dr. W. A. 

99 [BulLBrit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(3)] 

Rodgers. FPJ would like to thank the Director of the Zoologisk Museum, Copenhagen for 
encouragement and financial assistance. SNS undertook this research while in receipt of a 
Natural Environment Research Council (U.K.) studentship. His vehicle was supplied by 
WWF/IUCN as project number 1781. We are both indebted to the Tanzania National 
Scientific Research Council for allowing us to work in Tanzania, and the staff of the 
BMNH at Tring, and the Peabody Museum, Yale, U.S.A., for making skins available for 

References : 

Benson, C. W. & Irwin, M. P. S. 1975. The systematic position of Phyllastrephus orostruthus 

and Pby/lastrephus xanthophrys, two species incorrectly placed in the family Pycnonotidae 

(Aves). Arnoidia (Rhodesia) 7(17): 1-10. 
Britton, P. L. (ed.). 1980. Birds of East Africa. Nairobi: EANHS. 
Clancey, P. A. 1974. Subspeciation studies in some Rhodesian birds. Arnoidia (Rhodesia) 

6(28): 1-43. 

— 1979a- Miscellaneous taxonomic notes on African birds, 53. Durban Mus. Novit. 
12(1): 1-17. 

— 1979b. Miscellaneous taxonomic notes on African birds, 55. Durban Mus. Novit. 
.12(5): 47-6i. 

Irwin, M. P. S. & Clancey, P. A. 1974. A re-appraisal of the generic relationships of some 
African forest-dwelling robins (Aves: Turdidae). Arnoidia (Rhodesia) 6 (34): 1-19. 

Ripley, S. D. & Heinrich, G. H. 1969. Comments on the avifauna of Tanzania, II. Postilla 
134: 1-21. 

Stuart, S. N., Howell, K. M., van der Willigcn, T. A. & Geertsema, A. A. 1981. Some 
additions to the forest avifauna of the Uzungwa Mountains, Tanzania. Scopus 5 : 46-50. 

Stuart, S. N. & Jensen, F. P. 1981. Further range extensions and other notable records of 
forest birds from Tanzania. Scopus 5 : T06-115. 

White, C. M. N. 1962. A Revised Check List of African shrikes, . . . babblers. Lusaka: Govern- 
ment Printer. 

— 1965.^ Revised Check List of African Non-passerine Birds. Lusaka : Government Printer. 

Addresses: F. P. Jensen, Zoologisk Museum, Universitesparken 15, DK2100, Copenhagen* 
Denmark. S. N. Stuart, Department of Applied Biology, Pembroke Street, Cambridge* 
CB2 3DX, U.K. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

The identity of certain early Australian types 
referred to the Cuculidae 

by I. J. Mason 

Received 9 December 19 81 

Between 1788 and 1794 several artists were employed to illustrate natural 
history subjects at the first settlement of Port Jackson at Sydney Cove. 
Contrary to Mathews' statement (191 1 : 16), most of the drawings were of 
material from the environs of Port Jackson, the rest certainly from Australia 
(Hindwood 1970). In one set, now known as the 'Watling' drawings, 295 
birds were depicted. Only some are signed by Watling, the rest appearing to 
be the work of unknown artists. 

Some of these drawings were used as types by Latham (1801 b). His plates 
were copies of either the 'Watling* drawings or another set called the 
'Lambert' drawings. It is not known from which set Latham derived his 
descriptions, but it is irrelevant as the Lambert drawings were also copied 
from the 'Watling' drawings (cf. Hindwood 1970: 19). The 'Watling' 
drawings therefore, should be considered the types of Latham's descriptions 
(cf. Schodde & Mason 1980). One of these, the Fan-tailed Cuckoo Cuculus 

{BulLBrit.Om.Cl.i9S2: I02(j)] IOO 

flabelliformis (Latham 1801 b) was formerly regarded as an earlier name for 
Cuculus pyrrhophanus (Vieillot 18 17). Subsequent misinterpretation and 
confusion has left the identity of the binomial Cacomantis flabelliformis in 

I will show that flabelliformis is the earliest valid name for the species 
currently known as Cuculus pyrrhophanus and that its type is the 'Watling' 
drawing No. 75. In addition I will discuss two of its synonyms, rubricata 
(Latham 1801 b) and rufulus (Vieillot 18 17). To provide perspective I 
retraced the events culminating in the present doubt on the validity of these 
names. I have examined Latham's and Vieillot's type descriptions, the 
'Watling' drawings in question, and an adequate series of specimens from 
Australia of both adult and immature Fan-tailed Cuckoos Cacomantis flabelli- 
formis and Brush Cuckoos Cacomantis variolosus (Vigors & Horsfield 1827). 


Cuculus flabelliformis Latham, 1801, Index Orn. Suppl. p. 30. 

A number of the discussions on. flabelliformis reported here do not relate to 
the 'Watling' drawing (No. 75) per se but to Latham's (1801 a, b) descriptions 
and plate. However, it is not Latham's descriptions and plate but the identity 
of the type, the original 'Watling' drawing, that is in question. 

The identity of flabelliformis was first questioned by North (1906: 53) who 
concluded that Latham's latinized description of the "Fan-tailed Cuckow" 
(1801 b), derived from his English description (1801 a), was erroneously 
applied by Latham to flabelliformis. North further stated that Latham's 
(1801 a) description of flabelliformis — especially that of the tail — which 
agreed with his plate (cxxvi), did "not apply to the Cacomantis flabelliformis of 
the 'Catalogue of the Birds in the British Museum (Shelley 1891)' and writers 
in general". It was therefore North's opinion that the description Latham 
had applied to flabelliformis best fitted the Brush Cuckoo Cacomantis variolosus, 
to which species the name should be applied. Mathews (191 1 : 16) commented 
that Sharpe (1906 : 1 21) accepted the 'Watling' drawing as that of a Fan- tailed 
Cuckoo but had pointed out many inaccuracies, and Mathews went on to say 
that the figure reproduced hy Latham (1 801 a) in his General Synopsis, showing 
a black throat band, could not be identified with any Australian cuckoo. He 
considered it indeterminable and even "extra- Australian". In his 1919 account 
Mathews continued to cast doubt on the use of 'flabelliformis for the Fan-tailed 
Cuckoo. Hartert (1925 : 172) agreed with North and Mathews, that Latham's 
description "must have been a fanciful picture, as no such bird is yet known 
to exist. Latham's "Fan-tailed Cuckoo" is above brownish brown (sic), 
underneath orange, with a broad black collar across the jugulum". 

Neither North nor Hartert saw the original 'Watling' drawing upon which 
Latham based his description, and therefore may be excused for their 
conclusions. Mathews (191 1), however, had seen it, but when referring to 
flabelliformis as indeterminable he was not referring to the original drawing 
but instead to the plate in Latham's General Synopsis (1801 a), in which 
there are inaccuracies. It can thus be presumed that Mathews considered 
Latham's (1801 a) plate as the type. Moreover, his statement that Sharpe 
(1906) had noted inaccuracies in the illustration is erroneous. Sharpe made 
no such comment but instead simply referred Latham's descriptions and 
plate to the 'Watling' drawing, and stated that Latham's plate represents a 

i o i [Bull. Brit.Orn. CI. 1982: 102(3)] 

bird with a deeper red colour underneath and that the 'Watling' drawing 
may have faded. 

Recently Hindwood (1970: 26) analysed the 'Watling' drawing: "Although 
the figure shows a dark neck-band there can be little doubt from the tail 
pattern, the white on the wing-shoulder and eye-ring, that it was intended to 
represent the Fan-tailed Cuckoo". Hindwood concluded that Latham's plate — 
"is based on either this painting or on Lambert drawing No. 26 . . . which is a 
copy of Watling No. 75" — shows a further exaggeration of this neck band. 

The original 'Watling' drawing is unsigned and of poorer quality than the 
drawings signed by Watling himself. Presumably the unknown artist drew 
this bird from a specimen, emphasising what he thought were its diagnostic 
characters and exaggerating some of them. The drawing is an artistic inter- 
pretation in the style of the time, probably executed by an unskilled artist 
with inadequate painting material. Given these speculations, the drawing 
certainly represents a Fan-tailed Cuckoo, probably an immature specimen. 

There is no doubt that Latham's original (1801 b) description of flabelli- 
f or mis, latinized from his General Synopsis (1801 a) and referred to as the 
"Fan-tailed Cuckoo", originated from 'Watling' drawing No. 75. Latham 
never saw a specimen of this species, as was the case with a number of other 
species he described. He used the 'Watling' or (Lambert) drawing as a basis 
for his plate and descriptions, but altered in his plate and description, perhaps 
unwittingly, a number of crucial characters. The original 'Watling' drawing 
differs from that of Latham's (1801 a, b) descriptions and plate in these ways: 
the brown crown and side of head is barred faintly, with no great demarcation 
between the side of the face and throat; the breast band is narrower, less 
pronounced, and is not black as in Latham's (1801 a) plate, but instead 
washed with a dark brown tone ; the neck and sides of the breast are lighter 
rufous (washed dull yellow) which is presumably the artist's ploy to contrast 
the darker neck band ; the tones on the breast and vent are further reduced to 
light cream-yellow. Resembling the portrayal in the 'Watling' drawing, 
specimens of moulting immature Fan-tailed Cuckoos can retain some of the 
finely barred dark brown dorsal plumage and also exhibit a somewhat broad 
band of rufous on the breast (March ant & Hohn 1980 and pers. obs.), lighter 
rufous on throat and abdomen. In the 'Watling' drawing the pronounced 
eye-ring is illustrated as white. The base of the lower mandible is light, as 
appropriate to an immature bird. 

The fanned attitude and diagnostic barring of the tail in the original 
'Watling' drawing is further evidence that it depicts a Fan-tailed Cuckoo; the 
outermost rectrices are barred with complete alternating black and white bars 
on the inner webs to the feather shafts, and are edged white on the edges of 
the outer webs. The bars decrease in width on the inner webs towards the 
innermost remiges and the central pair are edged white. These characters are 
not portrayed fully in Latham's (1801 a) plate. 

Sylvia rubricata Latham, 1 801, Index Orn. Suppl. p. 5 5 . 

In the case of Sylvia rubricata Latham the identity of the bird painted by 
Watling is not in doubt, but whether Latham's (1801 b) description applies to 
that drawing requires clarification. 

Mathews (191 1 : 16), in rejecting flabelliformis as indeterminable and not to 
be outdone by North (1906) in the usage of Cuculus rufulus Vieillot for the 
Fan-tailed Cuckoo, prepared a case to validate Sylvia rubricata. Watling's 

[BulLBrit.Om.Cl.i9S2: I02(j)] I02 

drawing (No. 202), upon which Latham based Sylvia rubricata, is an accurate 
representation of a Fan-tailed Cuckoo and therefore would have been the 
next available name for this species. Mathews (191 1) noted that Watling's 
drawings Nos. 202 and 203, are both inscribed as 'Ruddy Warbler', the latter 
portraying a female, and although Latham's (1801 a) description of the 
Ruddy Warbler in his General Synopsis was based on both drawings, he 
latinized only the description that applied solely to the Cuckoo (No. 202) in 
his Ind. Orn. Suppl. (1801 b). Drawing No. 203 portrays an Eopsaltria 
australis (cf. Sharpe 1906: 143). Mathews (191 1) stated that "Latham's 
description is inaccurate only in the colour of the feet, which are given as 
"flavi", and which the figure shows as being dark.". Mathews (1912: 10-12) 
referred to his previous publication in regard to the validity of rubricatus and 
described two new subspecies, Cuculus rubricatus athertoni and C.r. albani. He 
continued to use rubricatus (Mathews 1919: 319-320) and described another 
subspecies, Cacomantis rubricatus eyrei. However, he commented that "the type 
painting is very good, but the feet are drawn wrong, as the artist was not an 

Mathews (1922: 399-400), apparently influenced by suggestions from the 
Checklist Committee of the Royal Australasian Ornithologists' Union, 
reversed his decision on the validity of rubricatus for the Fan-tailed Cuckoo. 
Acting on advice from this Committee that "the description given by Latham 
of his Ruddy Warbler did not agree with the cuckoo", Mathews (1922) 
reviewed the matter and decided that the drawing of the cuckoo which 
Latham himself recognised as his Ruddy- Warbler could not have been the 
one upon which Latham's description was based. He repeated both Latham's 
English and latinized descriptions (1801 a, b), drawing attention to the 
passage — ". . . the plumage above brownish ash colour: beneath wholly 
ferruginous, inclining to yellow . . . [Latham]", concluding that it did not fit 
the drawing from which it was said to have been derived. Mathews (1922) 
was of the opinion that ". . . as the upper surface is bluish-grey and the under- 
surface is pinkish-red, without any inclination to yellow, and the tail shows 
the white markings of the cuckoo; . . . there can be no hesitation in rejecting 
the description of the Ruddy- Warbler as referring to that painting, notwith- 
standing Latham's note". 

Although Hartert(i92 5 : 172) overlooked Mathews' (1922) publication, he 
had corresponded with Mathews and was aware that Mathews no longer 
used the name rubricatus. On the basis of that understanding Hartert (1925) 
quoted part of Latham's (1801 a) description, and then stated that it did not 
agree with Watling's drawing No. 202 which represents a Cacomantis but is 
inscribed as Latham's Sylvia rubricata. 

As previously stated by Mathews (191 1) Watling's 2 drawings Nos. 202 
and 203, are inscribed as 'Ruddy Warbler'. Although Latham may have 
thought that these 2 drawings could have been of the same species — as 
marked on the originals — he did not commit himself. His original English 
description (1801 a: 249(34)) is based only on Watling's drawing No. 202 
and fits it extremely well {pace Mathews 1922, Hartert 1925). Latham's 
(1801 b) latinized account refers only to that description. In fact the bird in 
Watling's drawing No. 202 is ash-grey dorsally; reddish-brown (rust- 
coloured) inclining to yellow ventrally — not pinkish-red as stated by Mathews 
(1922); flight feathers and tail brown, and feet dull cream brown. 

103 [Bull.Brit.Ont.Cl.i9S2: I02(j)] 

Thus Mathews' (191 1) comment that Latham's (1801 a) original English 
description of the Ruddy Warbler was based on Watling's drawings Nos. 

202 and 203 is unfounded. Latham (1 801 a) described Watling's drawing No. 

203 separately, under the name Gold-bellied Warbler (249: 33) and did not 
refer to or include this description in his 1801 b publication. Mathews (191 1) 
may have been confused, in that on page 249, the description of the 'Ruddy 
Warbler' (No. 34) was followed by the 'Chaste Warbler' (No. 35) with a 
comment that it was found with the last. However, as pointed out by Sharpe 
(1906: 143), the latter description referred to Watling drawing No. 200 
{Sylvia casta Latham). In his 1823 account Latham aligned his descriptions of 
Watling's drawings with much more certainty on page 138: — 170, Ruddy 
Warbler; 171, New-Holland Warbler "Native name Thadaguan. Is a very 
common and domestic bird, with the actions of the Redbreast ofELurope (my italics); 
has many things in common with the last: probably the female [Latham 
1823]"; 172, Chaste Warbler. 

It is obvious in comparing these two accounts, of the Golden-bellied 
Warbler and the New-Holland Warbler, that they are both of Watling's 
drawing No. 203. These descriptions both fit this drawing, and also, the 
words in my italics in the description (Latham 1823) are inscribed on the 
original Watling drawing. Thus, this further confirms that the Ruddy 
Warbler and Golden-bellied/New-Holland Warbler were taken from 
'Watling' drawings Nos. 202 and 203 respectively. There is no reason to 
suspect that the original inscriptions on these drawings were incorrect, as 
suggested by Hartert (1925). These inscriptions and all the others on the 
'Watling' series are accurate in that they can be referred to any of Latham's 
descriptions in his 1801 a and b accounts. 

Cuculus rufulus ViciWot, 18 17, Nouv. Diet. d'Hist. Nat., Ser. 8 : 234. 

In discussing the validity of flabel '/if or mis, North (1906) stated that if Cuculus 
rufulus Vieillot were applicable to the Fan-tailed Cuckoo it would be the 
next available name for this species. Mathews (191 2) evaded the question of 
the identity of rufulus by justifying an earlier name, rubricatus, for the Fan- 
tailed Cuckoo, but later regarded rufulus as a synonym of rubricatus (Mathews 

I 9 I 9)- 

Hartert (192 5 : 172) was the first to dispute the application of rufulus, stating 
that Vieillot's description is of a young Cacomantis, probably Cacomantis 
variolosus and that the description is insufficient to form a definite con- 
clusion. Hartert (1925 : 169) disputed Pucheran's (1852) opinion that it was 
of a young cineraceus (=flabelliformis), stating that he judged it "from the 
description, as he expressly stated, and had not seen the type, which was not 
in the Paris Museum, but in the collection of M. Baillon". In turn, Mathews 
(1926: 54) stated that he was "not satisfied that this [Vieillot's description] 
does not fit the immature of the Fan-tailed Cuckoo only, and it cannot be 
mixed up with the Square-tailed Cuckoo. The immatures are so different, 
and as the type came from New South Wales we know to what form to look. 
Granted that there is some doubt . . .". In reply to this, Hartert (1926: 56) 
once again said that " 'rufulus is in my opinion most certainly too uncertain to 
adopt it for any form with absolute certainty". 

After taking the previous discussions into account Amadon (1942) 
commented that "after studying Vieillot's description with a series of 
juvenals of both species" (C. pyrrhophanus=flabellij or mis and C. variolosus) he 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.19S2: i02(j)] 104 

could not justify the restriction of the name to either. The sections of 
Vieillot's (18 1 7) description that Amadon translated, e.g. (upper parts) 
"variees de brun et de roussatre", suggested that the description referred to 
the Brush Cuckoo rather than to the Fan-tailed Cuckoo. He went on to say 
that those who use this name (rufulus) for the Fan-tailed Cuckoo comment 
"that the remiges are ashy, the rectrices similar but darker and blackish" and 
concluded that this could refer to either. "The description of the belly, "le 
ventre de deux gris, Tun presque blanc et l'autre fonce . . .", might apply to 
many individuals of either species." He stated further that there were a 
number of other points of Vieillot's description that could fit either species — 
"not to mention other possibilities, if the locality should be wrong", deciding 
that it was impossible from Vieillot's description to identify Cuculus rufulus. 

There is no reason to doubt that the two specimens Vieillot (18 17) 
described under Cuculus rufulus originated from Australia, contrary to 
Amadon (1942). Pucheran (1852: 562), in discussing rufulus, commented: 
"This is another young individual like C. cineraceus . . . , this species is referred 
to flabelliformis by Latham". He obviously had no trouble in identifying C. 
cineraceus from this description contrary to Hartert's (1926) experience. 

To be able to place Vieillot's description of rufulus in perspective it is 
necessary to describe the juveniles from Australia of both the Fan-tailed 
Cuckoo and the Brush Cuckoo (which, incidentally are quite dissimilar, 
contrary to Amadon (1942)), and compare them with a 'complete' transla- 
tion of the description of the name in question. In discussing the uncertainty 
of rufulus, Amadon (1942) commented on disjointed pieces of this description, 
even omitting a critical sentence. However, the complete translation indicates 
rufulus is referable to a Fan-tailed Cuckoo. 

(a) Juvenile Fan-tailed Cuckoo : dorsally generally dark brown, barred with 
alternating dull, finely patterned red-brown and darker grey-brown; 
ventrally, throat and breast is more mottled with grey browns, alternating 
with white and washed with russet on occasions; varying to a lighter and 
mottled belly and abdomen with various tones of greys — in some specimens 
almost white; remiges plain dark grey-brown, rectrices black edged and or 
barred russet (with a half bar pattern). 

(b) juvenile Brush Cuckoo: dorsally generally lighter in tone than Fan-tailed, 
boldly patterned with alternating dark grey-brown and lighter tones of 
russet ; ventrally boldly patterned with pronounced alternating bars of dark 
grey-brown and white-washed light russet, in some specimens extending to 
the belly, but the belly itself and the abdomen are approaching white, the 
brown bars less intense ; remiges mid brown-grey, retrices darker grey-brown 
and approaching that of the Fan-tailed; both the rectrices and remiges are 
edged and barred russet (half bar pattern). 

A translation of Vieillot's (18 17) description is as follows (my italics): 'All 
the dorsal parts vary from brown to rufous-ish [russet}, the throat and breast are of 
the last tint and very lightly spotted white; the underside of the two specimens grey, 
one almost white, the other darker; the remiges ashy, the rectrices like the 
remiges but tending towards blackish and having the sides tending towards russet 
[rufous] . . .'. In comparing this description with those of the previous 2 
there is little doubt that the patterns and contrasting colours are more 
similar to those of the juvenile Fan- tailed Cuckoo and thus rufulus is best 
placed with its synonymy. 

ioj {Buli.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(3)] 


On the basis of the previous evidence flabelliformis should be reinstated for 
the Fan-tailed Cuckoo not only because it is the earliest valid name but also 
for uniformity and stabilization of nomenclature as this was the accepted 
name in literature for this species until the publication of Peters (1940) and 
in the Emu until the 1950s, (cf. RAOU 1955) including the R.A.O.U. (1926) 
Checklist. I also retain the use of the genus Cacomantis contrary to Condon 
(1975) (cf. Schodde & Mason, in prep.). 

The nominate subspecies of the Fan-tailed Cuckoo and its synonyms are 
as follows : 

Cacomantis flabelliformis flabelliformis (Latham) . 
Cuculus flabelliformis Latham, 1801, Index. Orn. Suppl., p. 30 (Sydney area, 

New South Wales). 
Sylvia rubricata* Latham, 1801, Index. Orn. Suppl., p. 55 (Sydney area, New 

South Wales). 
Cuculus rufulus Vieillot, 18 17, N. Diet. d'Hist. Nat., n. ser. 8: 234 (Nouvelle- 

Hollande= Australia). 
Cuculus prionurus Lichtenstein, 1823, Verz. Doubl. Zool. Mus. Berlin p. 9 

(New South Wales). 
Cuculus cineraceus Vigors & Horsfield, 1827, Trans. Linn. Soc. London, 15: 

298 (Parramatta, New South Wales). 
Cuculus incertus Vigors & Horsfield, 1827, Trans. Linn. Soc. London 15 : 299 

(Parramatta, New South Wales). 
Cuculus rubricatus athertoni Mathews, 191 2, Austral. Av. Rec. 1: 11 (Atherton, 

northern Queensland). 
Cuculus rubricatus albani Mathews, 191 2, Austral. Av. Rec. 1: 12 (Albany, 

Western Australia). 
Cacomantis rubricatus eyrei Mathews, 191 8, Birds Aust. 7: 320 (Eyre Peninsula 

South Australia). 

*Now that Sylvia rubricata is placed within the synonymy of the Fan-tailed 
Cuckoo the next available name for the Rock Warbler is Origma solitaria 
(Lewin) (see also Mathews 1922). 

Distribution. Eastern Australia from Cape York Peninsula south along the 
Great Dividing Range and its western foothills to Tasmania, coastal south- 
eastern South Australia to Eyre Peninsula and the southwestern sector of 
Western Australia. 

Cuculus pyrrhopbanus Vieillot is adequately discussed by Pucheran (1852), 
Hartert (1925: 174; 1926) and Amadon (1942: 15) and does not warrant 
further discussion. Thus pyrrhopbanus now becomes restricted to the sub- 
species of Cacomantis flabelliformis that inhabits New Caledonia and Loyalty 

Acknowledgements: I would like to thank the Librarians of CSIRO Division of Wildlife 
Research for obtaining the needed references. I also thank Mr. E. Slater for allowing me 
to inspect colour slides of the original 'Watling' drawings in his possession, Drs. G. 
Caughlay and J. H. Calaby, Messrs. F. H. J. Crome, S. A. Parker and G. C. Richards for 
advice and constructive criticism of the manuscript. 

References : 

Amadon, D. 1942. Birds collected during the Whitney South Sea Expedition, L. Notes on 

some non-passerine genera, 2. Amer. Mus. Novit. 1 1 76 : 1-2 1 . 
Condon, H. T. 1975. Checklist of theBirds of Australia. Part 1, Non-Passerines. Melbourne: 

Royal Australian Ornithologists' Union. 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i982: I02(j)] I06 

Hartert, E. 1925. Review of the genus Cacomantis Mull. Novit.Zool. 32: 164-174. 

— 1926. Answer to the 'Remarks on "Review of the genus Cacomantis".'' Novit. Zool. 33 : 
55-5 6 - 

Hindwood, K. A. 1970. The 'Watling' Drawings, with incidental notes on the 'Lambert' 

and the 'Latham' Drawings. Proc. Roy. Zool. Soc. New South Wales 1968-9 : 16-32. 
Latham, J. 1 801 a. A General Synopsis of Birds, Supplement II. London: Leigh & Sotheby. 

— 1 80 ib. Supplementum Indicis Ornithologici. London : Leigh & Sotheby. 

— 1 823 . A General History of Birds. Vol. 7. Winchester : Jacob & Johnson. 
Marchant, S. & Hohn, E. O. 1980. Field notes on the Fan-tailed Cuckoo. Emu 80: 77-80. 
Mathews, G. M. 191 1. On some necessary alterations in the Nomenclature of Birds, pt. 2. 

Novit.Zool. 18: 1-22. 

— 191 2. Notes on Australian Cuckoos. Austral. Av. Rec. 1 : 2-22. 

— 1919, 1922. The Birds of Australia, Vol. 7 (19 19) and Vol. 9 (1922). London: Witherby 

— 1926. Remarks on 'Review of the genus Cacomantis Mull'. Novit. Zool. 33: 53-54. 
North, A. J. 1906. Remarks on the names of some Australian birds. Ibis Ser. 8 (6) : 5 3-57. 
Peters, J. L. 1940. Check-list of Birds of the World. Vol. 4. Cambridge: Harvard University 

Pucheran, J. 1852. Etudes sur les types peu connus du Musee de Paris, 6. B. Types de 

Vieillot. Rev. et Mag. Zool. Ser. 2 (4) : 55 5-564. 
RAOU Checklist Committee. 1926. Official Checklist of the Birds of Australia. Melbourne: 

Gov. Printer. 

— 1955. Seventh Supplement to the Official Checklist of the Birds of Australia (Second 
Edition). £Jw# 55: 187-190. 

Schodde, R. & Mason, I. J. 1980. Nocturnal Birds of Australia. Melbourne: Lansdowne 

— (in prep.). 'Birds' in A Survey of the Vertebrate Land Fauna of the Alligator Rivers Region. 
CSIRO Division of Wildlife Research Tech. Paper Series. 

Sharpe, R. B. 1906. 'Birds' in The History of the Collections contained in the Natural History 
Departments of the British Museum. Vol. 2. London: British Museum (Natural History). 

Shelley, G. E. 1891. Cuculidae. Catalogue of the Birds in the British Museum. Vol. XIX: 
209-434. London : British Museum (Natural History). 

Vieillot, L. P. 18 17. In Nouveau Dictionnaire d'histoire naturelle, . . . Vol. 8: 234. Paris: Chez 

Address: I. J. Mason, CSIRO, P.O. Box 273, Atherton, Queensland 4883, Australia. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

A new species of Mirafra (Alaudidae) and new races of 
the Somali Long-billed Lark Mirafra somalica, Thekla Lark 
Galerida malabarica and Malindi Pipit Anthus melindae 
from southern coastal Somalia 

by P. R. Colston 

Received ij February 1982 

Six specimens of a new lark were collected by Dr J. S. Ash 13 km north of 
Uarsciek (= Warsheikh), some 80 km NE of Mogadiscio, in southern 
Somalia on 9 and 10 July 198 1. He found that they differed significantly 
from other members of the Alaudidae that he knew from his wide field 
experience in north Africa. A cursory glance through the literature (e.g. 

107 {Bull.BritDrn.Cl.19S2: i02(j)] 

(Mackworth-Praed & Grant 1955) showed them probably to be a new 
species, and as there was insufficient comparative material in the National 
Museum of Kenya, he kindly forwarded them to the British Museum 
(Natural History) (BMNH) for appraisal. Comparison with BMNH material 
shows the Uarsciek larks to be similar in structure and plumage to other 
Mirafra species and closest to M. somalka, which occurs at the same locality 
and has been collected at Uarsciek, 2 17' N, 45 ° 44' E (Roche 1966), 
although it is not shown in Hall & Moreau (1970). I have pleasure in naming 
the new lark after Dr John Ash who has contributed much valuable work 
on the birds of Somalia. 

Mirafra ashi sp. nov. 
Holotype: Unsexed adult (probably <J on size); 13 km north of Uarsciek, 
southern Somalia, 2 17' N, 45 50' E, 10 July 198 1. Collected by Dr J. S. 
Ash and prepared by J. E. Miskell. Lodged in the British Museum (Natural 
History), B.M. No. 1982-3-1. 

Description: Similar in structure to the sympatric Mirafra somalka, but 
smaller in its proportions (Table 1), with a shorter bill and darker plumaged 
above. Whereas somalica is bright cinnamon-rufous above, ashi is greyish- 
brown above with a very faint overlaying wash of cinnamon. It is also 
considerably more streaked and scaly looking above in general appearance 
than somalka. 

The head is ash-brown with a light cinnamon wash to the nape and hind 
neck. The feathers on the forehead have blackish brown centres with buff 
to grey tips and the longer grey-brown feathers of the crown are narrowly 
streaked dark brown. There are signs of a vestigial crest with a few elongated 
crown feathers reaching 1 1 mm in length. The streaking on the crown 
extends to the hind neck and upper back. The feathers of the mantle, 
shoulders and lower back have their centres marked with dark brown and 
are edged with narrow dark brown subterminal bands fringed with con- 
spicuous buff to white edges, giving the upper parts a scalloped appearance. 
The rump is greyish-brown, the feathers narrowly edged whitish to buff, 
and the upper tail coverts have inverted V-shaped bands of dark brown near 
their tips with paler buff edging. The wing coverts, which are pale cinnamon 
buff, have their central shafts narrowly marked dark brown and margined 
with narrow dark brown subterminal bands broadly edged with buffish- 
white. The tertials are pale brown, each with a dark brown central shaft, 
and narrow dark brown subterminal bands with broad buffish white edges 
(2 mm wide). Faint barring is present on the tertials with some 8 narrow 
grey-brown bars clearly visible. Like somalka, the primaries and outer 
secondaries have broad cinnamon margins for the basal two-thirds of their 
length and the remaining wedge-shaped portions are dusky brown. The 
underwing coverts are pale cinnamon and unmarked. The sides of the face 
and ear coverts are whitish streaked dark greyish with a cinnamon wash to 
the ear coverts. The lores are white but the buffish-white eyestripe is narrow, 
ill defined and does not extend much beyond the eye, whereas in somalica it 
is well marked and extends to the nape. The throat and sides of the neck are 
buffish-white finely spotted with grey on the lower throat enlarging to 
browner spots and streaking on the upper breast, which is suffused with 

[Bull. Brit.Orn. CI. 1982: 102(3)] 


pale cinnamon-buff. The sides of the body and flanks are also cinnamon- 
buff, with a few narrow brown streaks and the rest of the underparts are 
whitish-buff to white on the belly. The undertail coverts, like somalica, are 
streaked dark brown. The tail feathers, which are narrower and more 
pointed than in somalica, are dusky-brown with the central pair edged 
cinnamon. The outer tail feathers are narrowly edged white (1.5 mm wide) 
on both their inner and outer webs; somalica also has white outer tail feathers 
but the white is more conspicuous (3-3.5 mm wide). It is worth mentioning 
that the rather similarly plumaged M. sbarpei, which is found in a restricted 
area of North Somalia, has no white in the tail, and also differs from both 
somalica and ashi in its very short curved, not straight hind claw (6-7 mm), 
compared with somalica (1 1-1 5 mm) and ashi (1 1-1 5 mm). 

Colour of soft parts at time of collecting: iris dark ? brown ; legs and feet 
creamy; upper mandible dark grey, lower mandible pale bluish-grey. 

Measurements of type: Wing (flattened) 89, tail 5 1, culmen from base of skull 
24, tarsus 30, hind claw 14.5 mm; weight 40.2 gms at time of collecting. 

Table i 
Measurements oiMirafra ashi sp. no v. and M. somalica (mm and gm) (o-- 


M. ashi (5 0, 1 9) 

M. somalica (9 33, 3 9 9) 

wing (unsexed) 

80-94 (mean 86-6) 

wing 33 

95-107 (mean 102) 

tail (unsexed) 

50-56 (mean 52-8) 

tail 33 

58-72 (mean 66-6) 

bill (unsexed) 

2 1-24 (mean 22-9) 

bill 33 

23-29 (mean 26-6) 

tarsus (unsexed) 

29-30 (mean 29-4) 

tarsus 33 

30-34 (mean 31-8) 

weight (unsexed) 

31-3-41-9 (mean 37) 

wing 9 


wing 9 9 

90-95 (mean 92) 

tail 9 

47 (moulting) 

tail 9 9 

5 8-60 (mean 58-7) 

bill 9 


bill 9 9 

23-25 (mean 24-3) 

tarsus $ 


tarsus 9 9 

30-32 (mean 31) 

weight 9 


Other specimens collected: Only one of the 3 adults (all collected on 10 July), 
which includes the type, was sexed. It was a $ in full breeding condition 
with the largest ova measuring 12 mm and another 8 mm. What is unusual 
about this specimen is that it was in full wing and tail moult. The central 
tail feathers are only half grown and are greyer than the type, being dusky- 
grey tipped white. The remaining 3 birds collected on 9 July are not fully 
adult. They have broad cinnamon to buffish-white edges to the primaries 
and secondaries and are browner on the head and back. The brown spotting 
on the breast is finer and the underparts show more cinnamon-buff and less 
white on the belly. The two youngest have the shortest bills (21, 21 mm), 
which are paler horn. They have paler legs and feet than the type and have 
less well developed hind-claws (11, 12 mm). All 3 immatures show more 
white in their outer tail feathers than the adult, with one of the 2 youngest 
having most of the outer tail feather white for the last 16 mm or so of its 


[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.i9S2: 102(3)] 


Mirafra somalka has been thought to be monotypic and confined to a rather 
small well-defined area in the red soil desert of the plateau of British Somalia 
east and south of Burao (see Fig. 1), extending into north Somalia and 
occurring nowhere else. Archer (Archer & Godman 1961) considered the 
real stronghold of this lark to be on the Arori Plain near Burao, with the 









• «. 




xira5? ■&' 




iONl \ 













/gar a 
/ 1 


t - - 



„ «*■ 


# »« 











ierca G 





4 ^ 

Figure 1 . Map to show the more extensive range of Mirafra somalka in Somalia than was 
previously known. It incorporates mainly sight records plus a few specimens collected by 
Dr. J. S. Ash together with existing data. 

I £° squares where species now known to exist. 

extreme western limit of its range on the Tuyo Plain 60 km further west. 
The known eastern limit of its range in the north is some 400 km eastwards, 
stretching into the northern Haud to the vicinity of Gardo (see Map 7, Hall 
& Moreau 1970). The type of somalka was collected at Dibbit in the Mudug 
area, some 400 km south of Gardo. In August 1962, Roche collected an 
adult 6* and $ between Geriban and Garad and an adult $ at Geriban some 
160 km northeast of the type locality (Roche 1975). He also collected an 
adult o* much further south at Uarsciek on 16 Sep 1962 (Roche 1966). More 

{Bu1LBrit.0rn.CLi 9 8 z: 102(3)] IIQ 

recently Ash obtained an adult <3 some 24 km northeast of Uarsciek (see 
map) on 30 Mar 1979, which he kindly presented to BMNH (B.M. No. 
1 980.7.1). Through the kindness of Dr Jean Roche in arranging a loan of 
some of the specimens that he collected, I have been able to compare the 2 
southern Uarsciek larks with the other specimens from the Geriban area 
together with the BMNH type of somalica from Dibbit and more northern 
birds in the BMNH collections from around Burao and Gardo. When 
compared with the type, the Uarsciek larks differ significantly in the coloura- 
tion of their upper parts, being darker brown to chestnut-brown above. The 
breast and sides of the neck are also more heavily streaked. I have pleasure 
in naming this new form after Dr Jean Roche who has contributed much 
valuable ornithological work in Somalia. 

Mirafra somalica rochei subsp. nov. 

Holotype: $\ 24 km northeast of Uarsciek, southern Somalia, 02 17' N, 45 ° 
50' E, 30 Mar 1979. Collected by Dr J. S. Ash, prepared by Mohamed 
Mumin. Lodged in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.), B.M. No: 1 980.7.1. 

Description: When compared with the type the upper parts are chestnut- 
brown rather than pale cinnamon-rufous. The crown is also considerably 
darker chestnut-brown with a few feathers on the forehead having dark 
brown centres and some darker streaking on the nape. The feathers of the 
back and shoulders are brownish-chestnut with narrow dark brown centres 
and are edged pale greyish-white. The wings are browner than the type and 
the primaries and outer secondaries have darker cinnamon edges for the 
basal two-thirds of their length. The under wing coverts are also darker 
cinnamon. The chin and throat are white with dark brown spotting on the 
lower throat and more extensive chestnut-brown streaking on the breast. 
The sides of the neck and breast are more conspicuously washed than the 
type with dark cinnamon and streaked dark brown, the markings on the 
throat and breast of the type being much paler, fewer and less well defined. 
The rest of the plumage is similar to the type, although the Uarsciek birds 
would appear to be whiter on the belly. 

Colours of soft parts: Iris light chocolate; tarsus creamy- white ; bill colour 
was not noted at time of collection, but from the skin is dark horn and pale 
whitish-horn below with a dark brown tip. Colours at time of colletion. 

Measurements of type: Wing (flattened) 95, tail 64, culmen from base of skull 
26, tarsus 32 mm. 

Other specimens and remarks: The <S collected on 1 6 Sep is in moult and is 
similar to the type although it is browner above. The feathers of the forehead 
have darker blackish-brown centres and the head and neck are more strongly 
streaked dark brown. 

When the more northerly birds from Burao, Arori Plain and Gardo are 
compared with the rest of the material available they would appear to be 
appreciably larger (see Table 2) than specimens from the central localities of 
Geriban and Dibbit or the more southern birds of Uarsciek, etc. Not only 
is there a cline of decreasing size from north to south but there appear to be 
clinal differences in the colouration of the upper parts. In the north the 
specimens have the upperparts rich cinnamon-rufous, including the rump. 

Ill [ 102(3)] 

The type of somalica from Dibbit and the other Geriban and Garad speci- 
mens are greyer on the rump and upper tail coverts and the overall coloura- 
tion of the upperparts is less rufous with more noticeable grey fringes to 
the feathers on the back. 

Table 2 

Measurements (mm) of Mirafra somalica to show size difference between the northern 
birds and the central/southern birds. 

N. Somalia Central and S. Somalia 

(Burao, Arori Plain & Gardo) (Geriban, Garad, Dibbit, Uarsciek) 

No. of specimens: 4 66, 2 99 No. of specimens: 5 00, 1 9 



i03-i07(mean 105) 




:(mean 98-4) 




(mean 69-5) 




(mean 63-2) 




(mean 27-8) 




(mean 24-8) 




(mean 31-3) 




(mean 31-8) 




(mean 93) 







(mean 59) 






(mean 25) 






3^3 2 

(mean 31-5) 





A very grey example of Galerida malabarica collected in Somalia by Dr 
John Ash is quite different from the typical sandy-brown G. m. ellioti inhabit- 
ing the more northern and interior areas of Somaliland. Also in the B.M. 
collection is another similarly greyish-brown, fresh plumaged bird from the 
same area of southern coastal Somalia. It was collected at Merca (100 km 
south of Ash's specimen from Mailable) by J. G. Williams on 29 Jan 1954. 
White (1961), gives the range of ellioti as the interior of British Somaliland 
south into Italian Somaliland to Galkayu (=Gallacaio) and Merca. He 
mentions that specimens from the latter are greyer, less sandy-yellow than 
the more northern birds and may be separable. The 2 specimens from 
Mailable and Merca confirm his earlier opinion, being greyer above and 
lacking the warm sandy brown tones typical of ellioti. There is evidently a 
greyer plumaged population in the Mogadishu area. 

Galerida malabarica mallablensis subsp. nov. 
Holotype: Adult J; Mailable 30 km northeast of Mogadishu, southern 
Somalia, 2 12' N, 45 ° 37' E. 16 Dec 1978. Collected by Dr J. S. Ash. Lodged 
in the British Museum (Natural History), B.M. No: 1982-3-6. 

Description: The head is heavily streaked dark brown like ellioti, but having 
the feathers edged pale greyish or pale buffish rather than warm sandy- 
brown, and lacking the cinnamon wash to the nape typical of ellioti. The 
sides of the head are whitish strongly streaked dark brown, but lack the 
cinnamon wash to the ear coverts present in ellioti, and the eye stripe is 
white rather than creamy-buff. The upperparts have a distinct greyish caste 
when compared with a long series of the more warm rufous-brown or sandy- 
brown ellioti. The back and mantle are strongly marked dark greyish-brown 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i9S2: I02(j)] 112 

and the feathers are edged mainly pale greyish or whitish with a few pale 
greyish-buff. The wings are grey-brown rather than sandy-brown and the 
wing coverts are broadly edged whitish, whereas they are margined pale 
sandy-brown in ellioti. The lower back and rump are greyer and the upper 
tail coverts are pale buff in contrast to the more brightly coloured cinnamon 
upper tail coverts of ellioti. The breast is more heavily streaked dark brown 
and the sides of the body are washed greyish rather than the huffish-brown 
of ellioti. The underparts are white, lacking the warm buff tones to the 
breast and more creamy underparts of ellioti. The underwing coverts are 
very pale buffish- white in contrast to the darker cinnamon-buff of ellioti. The 
tail is greyer, less brown and the outer tail feathers are whitish rather than 
pale tawny-brown. Overall the bird is colder grey-brown above and whiter 
below, lacking all the warmer buff or brownish tones present in ellioti. 

Colour of soft parts {2X time of collecting) : Iris dark ? brown; legs pale brown; 
bill greyish-horn, paler below. 

Measurements of type: Wing (flattened) 96, tail 51, culmen from base of 
skull 16.5, tarsus 22 mm, weight 33.8 gms. 

Other East African forms: Apart from ellioti and mallablensis of Somalia, 4 
other races occur in East Africa, south of the Sahara: praetermissa in the 
highlands of Ethiopia and Eritrea; harrarensis known from 3 specimens 
collected in the north of the province of Harrar, Ethiopia (Erard & Jarry 
1973); huei from the mountains of Bale, Ethiopia (Erard & de Naurois 1973), 
separated by the Rift valley from those found in other high plateaux in 
Ethiopia ; and huriensis of north Kenya, where it has been collected within 
8 km of the frontier with Ethiopia (Benson 1945). 


Seven specimens of Anthus melindae were obtained by Dr John Ash from 
2 separate localities in southern Somalia. This is a coastal species of very 
limited distribution found only in Kenya and southern Somalia. Britton 
(1980) records that it is numerous in the littoral grasslands of Kenya (from 
Ngomeni to Karawa), and widespread though less common in the contiguous 
riparian grasslands of the lower Tana River. However, little has been 
recorded of its breeding biology in southern Somalia, although more 
recently Roche (1975) has collected specimens in the Giohar area (100 km 
from the coast), 50 km north of Balad. A series of 3 $$ (in fresh plumage) 
collected by Ash on 6 Feb 1979 together with an earlier $ (in moult), on 28 
Dec 1978, from Hawaala Buray, near Balad (2 26' N, 45 ° 17' E), are typical 
examples of this dark earth-brown plumaged pipit. Shortly after collecting 
the 3 earlier February birds, Ash obtained a further 3 ?? on 16 Feb 1979, 
near the coastal locality of Mailable. These coastal specimens differ signifi- 
cantly both from the Hawaala Buray series taken some 60 km inland from 
Mailable and also from specimens in the B.M. collections from Kenya 
(Chamgamwe, Mombasa and Malindi), including the type from Malindi. 
They are smaller in size, and the upperparts are paler ash-brown. Below they 
are whiter and the breast is streaked paler grey-brown in contrast to the 

1 1 3 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(3)] 

strongly streaked dark brown breast, flanks and abdomen in both sexes of 
typical melindae. 

Anthus melindae pallidus subsp. nov. 

Holotype: Adult $; Mailable, 30 km northeast of Mogadishu, southern 
Somalia, i° 12' N, 45 ° 37' E. 16 Feb 1979. Collected by Dr J. S. Ash. 
Lodged in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.), B.M. No: 1980-7-2. 

Table 3. Comparative differences in size between Anthus melindae melindae and pallidus 

(o = unsexed) 

A. m. melindae A. m. pallidus 

Localities: Hawaala Buray, Malindi, Chamgamwc, Mombasa. Locality: Mailable 

No. 0/ specimens (8) 5 <$<$, 2 99, 1 o. Ko. 0/ specimens 3 99 

wing (^(J 83-91 (mean 85.6) 9983,83 (mcan83) unsexed (ad) 85 mm wing 99 76-79 mm (mean 77.7) 

tail ,, 53-61 ,, 57.6) „ 55,58 ( „ 56.5) „ ,, 58 mm tail „ 53-55 mm (mean 54) 

bill „ 18 ( „ 18) „ 16.5, 17. 5 ( „ 17) „ „ 17 mm bill „ 16 mm ( „ 16) 

rarsus ,, 26-29( „ 27.4) „ 24,26 ( „ 25) ,, , 26 mm tarsus ,, 24-25 mm ( ,, 24.7) 

weight „ 24-27( „ 25.3(3)),, ( .. — ) » .. — gm weight „ 19-20.5 gm ( „ 19.6) 

Description: The head and upperparts are a paler ash-brown when com- 
pared with nominate melindae, which is dark earth-brown above. The wings 
are also pale greyish-brown with the coverts edged whitish or light buff 
rather than tawny-buff. Again the rump and upper tail coverts are pale 
greyish-buff rather than dark brown typical of melindae. The sides of the 
head are pale greyish-buff and the malar stripe is fainter, areas of which are 
dark brown in melindae. The streaking on the underparts is paler ash-brown 
much less distinct and less extensive than in melindae, which is heavily 
streaked dark brown on the chest, flanks and centre of the abdomen. The 
belly is whiter and the undertail coverts are creamy-white rather than buff. 
The sides of the body are pale ash-brown with a few fine darker brown 
streaks, whereas melindae is buffish-brown with broader dark brown streak- 
ing. The central pair of tail feathers are paler brown than in melindae and 
contrast with the rest of the dark brown tail, and the 2 outer pairs of tail 
feathers are more extensively paler ash-brown than in melindae. The 3 
Mailable birds would appear to be smaller in their proportions than those 
from Hawaala Buray or other Kenya specimens, inluding the type from 
Malindi (see Table 3). 

Colour of soft parts (at time of collecting) : Iris dark ? brown; legs pale sandy; 
bill dark brown, paler sandy below (from skin). 

Measurements of type: Wing (flattened) 78, tail 55, culmen from base of bill 
16, tarsus 24 mm, weight 20.5 gms. 

Acknowledgments: I should like to thank Prof. Dr. Benedetto Lanza of the Museo Zoolo- 
gico de 'La Specola', Italy, and Dr. Jean Roche of the Museum National d'Histoire 
Naturelle, Paris for the loan of specimens and Dr. John Ash for the specimens that he has 
generously presented and forwarded to BMNH. John E. Miskell prepared the larks 
referred to in this paper. Derek Goodwin kindly examined the specimens with me and 
confirmed my descriptions and colour renderings and I. C. J. Galbraith read an earlier 
draft of the paper. 

References : 

Archer, G. F. & Godman, E. M. 1961. The Birds of British Somaliland and the Gulf oj Aden. 
Vol. 3. London: Oliver and Boyd. 

[ Bull. Brit.Om. Cl.1982: ioz( »] 114 

Benson, C. W. 1945. Observations from Kenya Colony, Uganda and Tanganyika Territory. 

Ibis 87: 90-95. 
Britton, P. L. (ed). 1980. Birds of East Africa. Nairobi: EANHS. 
Erard, C. & de Naurois, R. 1973. A new race of Thekla Lark in Bale, Ethiopia. Bull. Brit. 

Orn.Cl. 93; 141-2. 
Erard, C. & Jarry G. 1973. A new race of the Thekla Lark in Harrar, Ethiopia. Bull. Brit. 

Orn.Cl. 93: 139-140. 
Hall, B. P. & Moreau. R. E. 1970. An Atlas of Speciation in African Passerine Birds. London: 

British Museum (Nat. Hist.). 
Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 1955. Birds of Eastern and Northeastern Africa. 

Vol. 2. London: Longmans, Green and Co. 
Peters, J. L. i960. Check-list of Birds of the World. Vol. 9. Cambridge: Harvard University 

Roche, J. 1966. Recherches ecologiques et systematiques sur les oiseaux de la Republique 

de Somalie (partie ex-Italienne). Monit. Zool. Ital. 74. Suppt. : 44-79. 
— 1975. Recherches ornithologiques en Republique de Somalie. Resultats de la 

Mission de 1964. Monit. Zool. Ital. No. 6: 103-140. 
White, C. M. N. 1961. A Revised Check List of African Broadhills . . . Pipits. Lusaka: Govern- 
ment Printer. 

Address: P. R. Colston, British Museum (Natural History), Tring, Herts., England. 

© British Ornithologists Club 1982. 

First record of Wilson's Phalarope Phalaropus tricolor 
from Suriname 

by Arie L. Spaans and Louis Autar 

Received 29 January 1982 

Wilson's Phalarope Phalaropus tricolor breeds mainly in western and interior 
North America and migrates predominantly through the western United 
States, eastern Pacific and western South America to winter in southern 
South America (AOU 1957, Meyer de Schauensee 1971, Blake 1977). During 
the autumn migration period, however, it is observed rarely but regularly on 
the Atlantic coast of North America (Pough 195 1) and incidentally in tha 
Caribbean (Bond 1971). The species has been seen once (November 1977) in 
Venezuela (Altman & Parrish 1978), which, as far as we are aware is the 
only record from northeast South America. We report here another sight 
record from this part of the continent. 

On 23 September 1980 we observed at a distance of 50-100 m two 
phalaropes in a coastal lagoon near Krofajapasi, c. 50km ENE of Paramaribo, 
Suriname. The birds were swimming alone when we located them, but a 
short time later we saw several Lesser Yellowlegs Tringa flavipes and Stilt 
Sandpipers Micropalama himantopus walking around between the swimming 
birds and realized that the swimming birds had shorter legs and were probably 
Wilson's Phalaropes. 

We described the birds as medium-sized waders with a small head and a 
rather long straight bill. When standing, the body looked similar in size to 
that of the Lesser Yellowlegs or Stilt Sandpipers feeding near them. When 
swimming, however, the birds appeared rather smaller. The upperparts were 

1 1 5 [Bttll.Brit.Orn.Cl.Kj82: 102(3)] 

very pale brownish, much paler than those of the Lesser Yellowlegs and 
Stilt Sandpipers. The wing tips were dark brown, the rump, side of neck and 
under-surface white with an indication of pale buffy brown on the side of 
the abdomen. The head was typical of a phalarope, and the dark crown was 
separated from a dark stripe behind the eye by a white superciliary. 

The species has not been reported previously from the Guianas. 
Haverschmidt (1968) does not mention it from Suriname, nor does Snyder 
(1966) from Guyana. Our observation represents therefore the first record 
of the species from this part of South America and the second one from 
northeast South America. 

Given the well-established proclivity of waders towards vagrancy, the 
Surinam and Venezuelan records can be best considered as accidentals. It 
must be pointed out, however, that Wilson's Phalarope has recently extended 
its breeding range in Canada northeastwards and now breeds as far north 
and east as James Bay, Ontario (Morrison & Manning 1976). In the same 
period there has been an increase in spring sightings in eastern North 
America, and beside the initial route along the Atlantic coast, the species 
may have established a second, inland, route through the Appalachian 
Mountains (Patterson 1980). The present record may therefore reflect the 
species' recent spread to the east in North America. 

Acknowledgements: We are grateful to the Foundation for Nature Preservation in Suriname 
for the use of facilities at Krofajapasi and for logistical support. A. L. Spaans' visit to 
Suriname was partially supported by grant WR 87-20 from the Netherlands Foundation 
for the Advancement of Tropical Research (WOTRO), The Hague. This note is a con- 
tribution of the 1980 Dutch mini-expedition to Suriname. 

References : 

American Ornithologists' Union. 1957. Check-list of North American Birds (5 th ed.). Amer. 
Orn. Union : Baltimore, Maryland. 

Altman, A. & Parrish, C. 1978. Sight records of Wilson's Phalarope, Ruff, and other 
shorebirds from Venezuela. American Birds 3 2 : 309-3 10. 

Blake, E. R. 1977. Manual of Neotropical Birds. Vol. 1. University of Chicago Press: 

Bond, J. \<)-j\.Birdsofthe West Indies (2nd ed.). Collins: London. 

Haverschmidt, F. 1968. Birds of Surinam. Oliver & Boyd: Edinburgh. 

Meyer de Schauensee, R. 1971. A Guide to the Birds of South America. Oliver & Boyd: 

Morrison, R. I. G. & Manning, T. H. 1976. First breeding records of Wilson's Phalarope 
for James Bay, Ontario. Auk 93 : 656-657. 

Patterson, R. L. 1980. Possible unrecognized spring migration routes of Wilson's 
Phalarope. Wader Study Group Bt diet in 29: 36. 

Pough, R. H. 195 1. Audubon Water Bird Guide. Doubleday : Garden City, N.Y. 

Snyder, D. E. 1966. The Birds oj "Guyana. Peabody Museum: Salem, Mass. 

Addresses: Dr. A. L. Spaans, Research Institute for Nature Management, Kemperbergerweg 
67, 6816 RM Arnhem, Netherlands. 

L. Autar, Surinam Forest Service, P.O. Box 436, Paramaribo, Suriname. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

[Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.1982: 102(3)] n6 

Additional information on the Rock Pratincole 
Glareola nuchalis in Togo 

by Robert A. Cheke 

Received 2 March 1982 

In a previous note (Cheke 1980) I described observations made in 1979 at a 
small colony of the Rock Pratincole Glareola nuchalis liberiae at Landa- 
Pozanda (9 31' N, i° 17' E) on the Kara river in Togo. In 1979 I was 
unable to locate a nest or to confirm whether any of the population were 
migrants. During May to July 1980 and August to December 198 1 I made 
further observations at the same colony and include here information on a 
nest found in 1980 and on the birds' movements. 

On 16 May 1980, 6 birds were present and by 1 June it was clear from 
their behaviour that they were separated into pairs, occupying territories 
which were in the same positions as those tenured in the previous year. One 
of these was an expanse of rock, whereon I found an egg on a ledge sheltered 
by overhanging stone. The nest site and egg were typical for the species 
(Bannerman 1953, Mackworth-Praed & Grant 1970), the egg having a buff 
background mostly obscured by very dark brown, almost black, blotches 
interspersed with rich brown freckles and measuring 28 x 21 mm. 

Paired birds were again seen to perform the greeting displays described in 
my earlier note and sometimes held their collars flared, revealing the maxi- 
mum expanse of chesnut feathering, for as long as 20 seconds. Some birds 
continued this display, with their collars remaining flared, by bobbing their 
heads up and down and keeping their bills opened slightly. 

On 14 June an additional adult bird had appeared, but the egg had 
vanished and there were no signs of any young. Neither were there any young 
birds visible on 21 June when all 3 pairs were in their usual positions; yet on 
15 July 7 adults and 2 well-grown juveniles, almost as large as the adults, 
were present. By this time the river had risen substantially and the nest site 
was submerged. Two days later the young birds were seen flying and they 
were still present on 24 July. 

From June to mid- August 1981 about 6 birds were again present (Dr. 
S. E. O. Meredith) but on 25 August I was surprised to count 23. Of these, 
21 were together in a single flock, only one of whose members was dis- 
tinguished as a juvenile. On 5 September, 3 adults remained and a single 
adult alone was present during visits on 11, 24 and 31 October. This latter 
individual had an entirely white nuchal collar and so was ascribed to the 
eastern race G. n. nuchalis, which has not previously been recorded so far 
west. Benson & Irwin (1965) suggested that any records of G. n. nuchalis 
within the range of G. n. liberiae would represent off-season movements 
and Snow (1978) states that both subspecies have been collected together in 
Cameroon. No Rock Pratincoles of either race were present on 29 November. 

The occurrence of the flock of G. n. liberiae in late August followed by 
their departure, and at least 2 months absence, strongly suggests that the 
birds are migratory, although their winter quarters remain unknown. The 
only winter record I have is of one bird on 28 November 1981 on the Mono 
river, a few kilometres north of Tetetou (7 1 ' N, i° 30' E) in Togo, close 
to where Dekeyser (195 1) recorded a pair on 22 May 1950. 

1 1 7 {Bull.Brit.Orn. CI. 1982: 102(3)] 

References : 

Bannerman, D. A. 1963. The Birds of West and Equatorial Africa. Vol. 1. Oliver and Boyd: 

Edinburgh and London. 
Benson, C. W. & Irwin, M. P. S. 1965. Some intra- African migratory birds, II. Puku 3: 

Cheke, R. A. 1980. A small breeding colony of the Rock Pratincole G/areo/a nucbalis 

liberiae in Togo. Bull. Brit. Orn. CI. 100: 175-178. 
Dekeyser, P. L. 195 1. Mission A. Villiers au Togo et au Dahomey (1950). III. Oiseaux. 

Etudes Dahommeens 5 : 47-84. 
Mackworth-Praed, C. W. & Grant, C. H. B. 1970. African Handbook of Birds. Series 3. 

Birds of West Central and Western Africa. Vol. 1. Longmans: London. 
Snow, D. W. (ed). 1978. An Atlas of Speciation in African Non-passerine Birds. British Museum 

(Nat. Hist.) : London. 

Address: Dr. R. A. Cheke, Centre for Overseas Pest Research, College House, Wrights Lane, 
London W8 5SJ, U.K. 

© British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 


Schmidl, D. 1982. The Birds of the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. Pp. 132. 8 habitat 
photographs, maps. British Ornithologists' Union, c/o The Zoological Society, Regent's 
Park, London NWi 4RY. £1 1 (£10 to BOU members during 1982). 

The fifth in the series of annotated avifaunal lists being published by the BOU. Over 
500 species are assessed for status, habitat, breeding, distribution and movements. The 
introductory sections cover the history, geography, geology, climate, vegetation and 
habitats of the Park, as well as breeding seasons and migration. There is a comprehensive 
bibliography and the indices cover scientific and English names. 

Watling, Dick. 1982. Birds of Fiji, Tonga and Samoa. Pp. 176. Many photographs in colour; 
illustrated in black-and-white and colour by Chloe Talbot- Kelly. Millwood Press: 
Wellington, N.Z. £25. (Distributed in U.K. by Croom Helm Ltd., St. John's Road, 

The extravagance and price of this excellently produced book should not be allowed to 
disguise the fact that it is a comprehensive review of the avifauna of 3 well known islands, 
explored for 14 years by the author, a committed conservationist, most especially in an 
area where conservation is paramount, if for no other reason than that 56 % of its land birds 
are endemic, 10 of the species being in endemic genera or subgenera. The photographic 
illustrations are lavish, especially of the Fiji region, and sometimes dramatic. The paintings, 
drawings and silhouettes are both decorative and helpful for identification, though most 
birds, even the doves, look startled or severe. 

There are good maps and sections on the ornithological history, composition of the 
avifauna, and brief discussion of ecological isolation, breeding and moult, and conservation. 
The systematic list is divided into Land and Sea Birds, distribution maps being provided 
for the former in most cases. The text gives features of identification, flight, voice, food, 
breeding, habitat and range and allied species. There is a full bibliography and much 
research has gone into providing vernacular names of all the birds. The whole is a success- 
ful, unassumingly written account of an intriguing avifauna and will be invaluable for 
anyone visiting or researching the three islands, though regrettably at A4 size it is unsuitable 
for use in the field. 

{Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.19S2: 102(3 )] n8 

Curry-Lindahl, K. 198 1. Bird Migration in Africa. Academic Press: London. Vol. 1, Pp. 
xxiii + 444, 255 distribution maps. £41.40; Vol. 2, Pp. xxiii + 251, 32 habitat photo- 
graphs, bibliography. £20.60. (London publication date: November 1982.) 

Professor Curry-Lindahl began compilation for this work in 1961, since when, of course, 
there have been several major works of importance on the subject. Vol. 1 briefly describes 
'Africa as a Bird Continent' and deals with migration to and from Africa, Eurasian migrants 
both to and within Africa and their 'time tables', with many maps indicating distribution and 
'routes', American vagrants and other non-Palaearctic visitors. There is then a 200 page 
section on African migrants within Africa, which usefully tabulates and maps such informa- 
tion in one publication for perhaps the first time. Vol. 2 covers related aspects more briefly, 
such as step migration, ecology of Eurasian birds in Africa, physiology and migrating 
birds and their relationships with man in Africa. 

Two main criticisms arise. First, interpretation of the importance of any of the maps is 
handicapped by no mention being made of the type of projection used; it is not equal area 
nor is it gnomonic. The latter is almost essential in plotting 'routes and directions' unless 
one assumes that the great majority of birds do not navigate the shortest route between two 
places a long distance apart; many dog-leg and loop migrations appear quite different on 
gnomonic projection, while it can also be seen then, for example, that the Willow Warbler 
breeding in the far NE of Siberia must leave on a course north of West to reach its winter 
quarters in East Africa, a fact unimaginable from the projection used here. Thus, the 
arrows which "show migration routes and directions of migration" need considering with 
care and the author's warning that "arrows indicating a single flight direction . . . should 
not be interpreted in a conclusive way" is apposite, though not for the reason he gives. 

Secondly, the author does not state the sources of his summaries in the tables and maps 
(which form two thirds of Vol. 1), though apparently the data are often drawn from his own 
long experience in Africa. Comparison of the winter quarters given on the maps for nearly 
all the Palaearctic migrants shows considerable (even allowing for a different projection), 
sometimes controversial, differences from those in Moreau's (1972) 'The Palaearctic- African 
Bird Migration Systems' (incidentally cited in 2 incorrect forms in the text and the biblio- 
graphy). It would be valuable to know from the bibliography of nearly 700 titles from which 
sources the new assessments over the last decade had been made. Without his own compre- 
hensive bibliography and knowledge or both, the reader is unable to make an informed 
judgement of the author's opinions and accuracy. Nor is the source of the breeding distri- 
butions in the Palaearctic given, though this closely follows Moreau, who mainly followed 
Voous's(i96o) 'Atlas'. 

In summary, the book is a tabulation and mapping of a recent assessment of the distri- 
bution and movement of migrants inside and into Africa from the Western Palaearctic, 
with a wide-ranging text which does not attempt to go too deeply into the subject. 

A word of disapprobation for the publishers is not out of place. Academic Press could 
well have organised this work comfortably into one volume: the text print is extravagantly 
large and the tables (in reasonable size type) waste a huge area of paper, Tables 3-5 for 
example, covering 169 pages of Vol. 1, almost unbelievably so. To charge £62 for 2 
volumes when one would have sufficed, and £20 for Vol. 2 alone, consisting of only 173 
pages, plus 66 repeated verbatim from Vol. 1 and placing the bibliography in Vol. 2 only, 
will be considered outrageous by very many potential readers. Surely, major, and indeed 
all, scientific works should be published with a view to reaching as wide an audience as 
possible compatible with a reasonable financial return; but the deliberate policy adopted 
in this case discourages the average ornithologist from buying his own copy and it seems 
unlikely that the volumes will sell widely except to libraries and institutions* 

Papers, whether by Club Members or by non-members, should be sent to the 
Editor, Dr. J. F. Monk, The Glebe Cottage, Goring, Reading RG8 9AP, and 
are accepted on the understanding that they are offered solely for publication 
in the Bulletin. They should be typed on one side of the paper, with double- 
spacing and a wide margin, and submitted with a duplicate copy on airmail 

Scientific nomenclature and the style and lay-out of papers and of Refer- 
ences should conform with usage in this or recent issues of the Bulletin, unless 
a departure is explained and justified; but informants of unpublished 
observations (usually given as in litt. or pers. comm.) should be cited by 
initials and name only, e.g. ". . . catches wasps (B. Eater)", but "B.B.C. Gull 
informs me that . . .". Photographic illustrations, although welcome, can 
only be accepted if the contributor is willing to pay for their reproduction. 

An author wishing to introduce a new name or describe a new form should 
append nom.,gen. } sp. or subsp. nov., as appropriate, and set out the supporting 
evidence under the headings "Description", "Distribution", "Type", 
"Measurements of Type" and "Material examined", plus any others needed. 

A contributor is entitled to 10 free reprints of the pages of the Bulletin in which his con- 
tribution, if one page or more in length, appears. Additional reprints or reprints of contri- 
butions of less than one page may be ordered when the manuscript is submitted and will be 
charged for. Authors may be charged for proof corrections for which they are responsible 

Available on application to Dr D. W. Snow, British Museum (Natural 
History), Tring, Herts HP2 3 6AP as follows: 198 1-2 (Vols. 101 & 102)^3 each 
issue, 1980 (Vol. 100) No. 1 £4, No. 2, 3 & 4 £2 each, 1973-9 (Vols. 93-99) 
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Long runs (at least 10 years) for Vol. 50 and after are available at reduced 
rates on enquiry. Orders over £50 post free. 

Only Members of the British Ornithologists' Union are eligible to join the 
Club: applications should be sent to the Hon. Treasurer, Mrs. D. Bradley, 
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Correspondence about Club meetings and other matters not mentioned 
above should go to the Hon. Secretary, R. E. F. Peal, 2 Chestnut Lane, 
Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR. 


Club Notes 87 

D. C. Duffy. Land-birds of a guano island off the coast of Peru ... 87 

J. S. Ash. The Somali Short-billed Crombec Sylvietta philippae in 

Somalia and Ethiopia 89 

M. Gochfeld, P. A. Buckley & Francine G. Buckley. Plumage 

"atavism" in a Black-crowned Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax 92 

S. Somardikarta & M. Noerdjito. The Lesser Whistling Duck 

Dendrocygnajavanica (Horsfield) in Flores 94 

F. P. Jensen & S. N. Stuart. New subspecies of forest birds from 

Tanzania ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 95 

I. J. Mason. The identity of certain early Australian types referred 

to the Cuculidae ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 99 

P. R. Colston. A new species of Mirafra (Alaudidae) and new 
races of the Somali Long-billed Lark Mirafra somalica, Thekla 
Lark Galerida tnalabarica and Malindi Pipit Antbus melindae from 
southern coastal Somalia ... ... ... ... ... ... 106 

A. L. Spaans & L. Autar. First record of Wilson's Phalarope 

BSa/aropus tricolor from Suriname ... ... ... ... ... 114 

R. A. Cheke. Additional information on the Rock Pratincole 

Glareola nucbalis in Togo 116 

Books Received 117 

Published by the BRITISH ORNITHOLOGISTS' CLUB and printed by 
The Caxton and Holmesdale Press, 104 London Road Sevenoaks Kent. 


ISSN 0007-1595 

Bulletin of the 

British Ornithologists' Club 

Edited by 
Dr. J. F. MONK 

Volume 102 No. 4 

December 1 982 


Tuesday, 18 January 1983 in the Senior Common Room, South Side, 
Imperial College, Prince's Gardens, S.W.7 at 6.30 p.m. for 7 p.m., Mr Robin 
Woods, who worked in the Falkland Islands for 6 years, author of "The 
Birds of the Falkland Islands" and of "Falkland Island Birds" (July 1982), 
will speak on Some Birds of the Falkland Islands. Those wishing to attend should 
send their acceptance with a cheque for £6. 1 5 a person to reach the Hon. 
Secretary at 2 Chestnut Lane, Sevenoaks, Kent TN13 3AR (telephone 
Sevenoaks (073 2) 4503 1 3) not later than first post on Thursday, 1 3 January. 

Tuesday, 8 March 1983, at the same venue and time, Dr James Cadbury, 

Head of Research at the R.S.P.B., will speak on The Restoration of Habitats 
for Birds. Those wishing to attend should send their acceptance with a 
cheque for £6.15 a person to reach the Hon. Secretary (address above) not 
later than first post on Thursday, 3 March. 

Tuesday, 17 May 1983, at the same venue and time, Dr D. W. Snow 
will speak on Hummingbirds in the Cohfnbian Andes. 

Tuesday, 5 July 1983 Mr Paul Goriup will speak on Bustards. 

Many copies of 'the Bulletin must get thrown away annually by 
Members, copies which the Club would welcome. Pleas e 
send all unwanted copies, and ask your Executors to do the 
same, to the Hon. Treasurer at 53 Osterley Road, Isleworth, 
Middlesex TW7 4PW at any time. Postage will be refunded 
if requested. 


D. R. Cz\<\et{Chairman) B. Gray ( Vice-Chairman) 

R. E. F. Peal(//o«. Secretary) Mrs. D. M. Bradley {Hon. Treasurer) 

Dr. J . F. Monk {Editor) J . G. Parker 

R. A. N. Croucher Revd. G. K. McCulloch, O.B.E. 

P. J. Conder, O.B.E. 

©British Ornithologists' Club 1982. 

1 1 9 [Bull.Brit.Orn.Cl.19 82 102(4)] 

Bulletin of the 


Vol. 102 No. 4 Published: 20 December 1982 

The seven hundred and forty-first Meeting of the Club was held in the Senior Common 
Room, South Side, Imperial College, London, S.W.7 on Tuesday, 21 September 1982 at 
7 p.m. The attendance was 27 Members and 7 guests. 

Members present were: D. R. CALDER {Chairman), F. B. S. ANTRAM, Major 
WALTERS and Lieut.-Col. T. C. WHITE. 

Guests present were: Mrs N. A. G. H. BEAL, Mrs I. McCULLOCH, Dr AMICIA 

Dr D. C. Houston gave a stimulating address on "Vultures", dealing especially with the 
feeding ecology of vultures in parts of East Africa where he had studied them closely. A 
lively discussion followed. 

The seven hundred and forty-second Meeting of the Club was held at Sevenoaks on 
Saturday, 16 October 1982, commencing at 10.30 a.m. 

Those participating were : 

Members : Mrs DIANA BRADLEY, R. E. F. PEAL and M. P. WALTERS. 


In the morning Dr D. L. Harrison conducted the party round the Harrison Zoological 
Museum, showing the fine collection of mounted specimens and particularly interesting 
examples from the some 30,000 bird skins and many mammal skins. He also explained 
that use of the collections for research purposes is welcomed. Lunch was kindly provided 
by Mrs Peal at 2 Chestnut Lane. In the afternoon Mr A. Heaton conducted the party round 
the Sevenoaks Experimental Wildfowl Reserve; he explained its origins and its aims and 
showed the various species present. After a dry morning there was rain in the afternoon 
and a very interesting Meeting closed at 4.30 p.m. We extend our thanks to Dr D. L. 
Harrison and to Mr A. Heaton. 

Variations in the white markings of the Blackish 
Nightjar Caprimulgus nigrescens 

by J. Inge Is andJ.-H. Ribot 

Received 2 March 1982 
Crepuscular and nocturnal nighthawks and nightjars (Caprimulgidae) roost 
during the day at suitable sites in their habitats. During this period of 
inactivity, they trust their cryptic colour pattern blending perfectly with their 
surroundings to escape predators who rely upon eyesight. Their intricate 
colour patterns are so tedious to describe that descriptions in field guides are 
usually limited to general impressions of plumage colours and obvious 
differentiating characters. 

In the genus Caprimulgus, identification characters are restricted to a throat 

[Bull.Brit.Om.Cl.i982 102(4)] 120 

band, patches in the primaries and the tips of the rectrices. These markings 
are mostly white and pronounced in <JcJ, greatly reduced or absent and 
replaced by buff or tawny in $$, thus forming an important sexual dimor- 
phism (Meyer de Schauensee 1970). 

The Blackish Nightjar Caprimulgus nigrescens is the darkest coloured of 
neotropical caprimulgids. Its distribution is restricted to the Amazonian 
basin (Meyer de Schauensee 1964). Its habitat includes open or rocky places 
and roads in forests, second growth and savannas, large granite outcrops in 
rain forest and rocks in mid-stream along rivers (Haverschmidt 1968). 

It is a small (length 20 cm) blackish nightjar with rufous spots and mott- 
lings on the dorsal surface and a few whitish spots on the breast. The tail of 
both sexes is distinctly barred with broad mottled greyish buff transverse 
bars. Sexual dimorphism is obvious; $$ have no white in tail and wings, but 
an indistinct white throat band, sometimes broken in the middle, is usually 
found in both sexes. This paper deals with variations in the white markings 
of $$ and in the mottled greyish buff tail barring of both sexes. 

In field guides on the avifauna of Surinam, Venezuela, Colombia and 
South America in general, the white pattern of Blackish Nightjar $$ is 
described respectively as follows : — 

'The male has a white spot on the inner web of the third and fourth primaries 
and white tips to the two penultimate tail-feathers' (Haverschmidt 1968). 
'Outer two primaries uniform blackish, next two with white spot on inner 
web. Outermost tail feathers virtually uniform, next two tipped white ' 
(Meyer de Schauensee 1970). 

'. . . small spots on inner web of inner primaries and narrow tip to second 
and third outermost tailfeathers white' (Meyer de Schauensee 1964). 
'Primaries black with a white spot on the middle of the inner web of the 
2nd, $rd and 4th feather (sometimes indistinct on the 2nd primary). A white 
tip 0.5 m. (12 mm) wide on both webs of 2nd and $rd outer rectrix' (Meyer 
de Schauensee & Phelps 1978). (The numbering of primaries and rectrices 
is reversed here). 

We examined 29 specimens (17 (?, 12$) in the British Museum (Natural 
History) (BMNH) and 1 3 specimens (8 <?, 5 $) in the Rijksmuseum van Natuur- 
lijke Historie (RNH, Leiden) from Surinam (13), British Guiana (now Guy- 
ana) (16), Ecuador (5), Peru (2), Brazil (3) and 3 from an unknown locality. 
In addition to these museum specimens, 9 individuals (7 <J, 2 ?) of a popula- 
tion of Blackish Nightjars were mist-netted and examined in April 1980 
near Voltzberg (4 40 'N, 5 6° 1 1 'W) in Surinam. Four (3 <J, 1 $) were juveniles 
from the earlier February-March 1980 breeding season. Juveniles moult into 
their first basic or adult plumage within 2-3 months after fledging. 

All $3 were examined for form and pattern of the white wing patches and 
tail tips. In both sexes, tail barring was examined, special attention being 
given to symmetry of barring on both inner and outer webs, and to the 
orientation of the bars with regard to the feather shaft. These phenomena 
were also compared in juvenal and adult specimens